Every now and then I stumble upon a column which says exactly what I had been thinking but had not yet written.
Christian Whiton absolutely is on target as to the reasons behind the collective and almost uniform piling on of Newt by the Republican pundit and political class which supports Mitt Romney, Why Washington Is Shocked, Shocked By Newt Gingrich’s Rise Over Mitt Romney.
Whiton’s theory is that while Newt may be of Washington, he is not a creature of the current Republican political and punditry establishment, and is someone who will do much more than move around the chairs at the same D.C. feeding trough.
This excerpt doesn’t do the column justice, but it will give a flavor, so by all means read the whole thing:
… Gingrich has the audacity to imagine that Washington can be run without his own party’s establishment. Their assumption of dominating the next Republican administration is not safe if it is Gingrich. He is not proposing to replace the Democratic piano player at the brothel that is Washington with a slightly sterner-sounding Republican. Instead, he claims he will close the brothel. And the establishment of his own party just knows that can’t happen. In their lives, it never has. And where are they then to go for their pork and porking?
The establishment may still prevail. There are nearly infinite news cycles until the nomination is won by someone. Gingrich’s opponents are not close to giving up and serious Wall Street money is falling squarely behind Romney.
Whiton also has one of the best lines of the campaign season, as part of an explanation how the “smart” punditry did not see it coming (emphasis mine):
Back in our capital city, Jennifer Rubin, the Republican at the Washington Post, congratulated herself noting “I suggested that Republicans ‘could pull a name out of a hat and find a more consistent and personally stable conservative’ than Newt Gingrich. Many smart conservatives seem to agree.” Maybe Ms. Rubin should start listening to people she thinks are dumb.
The abuse and disdain being heaped on Newt resembles the abuse and disdain heaped on the Tea Party movement, and comes from the very same people. That may help explain why Newt is so popular with Tea Party supporters compared with Romney.
Newt may not be Tea Party, but his D.C. enemies treat him like he is. Maybe they’re onto something.