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They were wrong in 1990 and they are wrong now

They were wrong in 1990 and they are wrong now

Bob Woodward had a lengthy article yesterday in The Washington Post, In his debut in Washington’s power struggles, Gingrich threw a bomb.

The article concerns Newt’s refusal as Republican Whip to go along with George H.W. Bush’s 1990 deal with Democrats to raise taxes.

The deal, which breached Bush’s “read my lips, no new taxes” pledge, was one of the worst political mistakes in memory.  Newt’s public opposition is one of the reasons the Republican old-time establishment, like John Sununu, hate Newt so intensely.

After a lengthy interview on Dec. 11, 1992, [Newt] sent a reporter a memo trying to explain the budget communications problem. It is a classic of Gingrich paradox.

“I was telling precisely the truth but by Washington standards I was lying,” he wrote. “They were lying but by Washington standards they were telling the truth. I thought I was being very precise in setting standards, they thought I was outlining a negotiating position. I knew I could and would walk. They knew I had to stay.” …

Gingrich had been warned about this moment. He said that a group of senior Republicans who had served in previous administrations told him he would have to cave in when a deal was struck.

“They all said, ‘Well [the White House and the congressional Democrats] will in the end cut a deal and they will in the end call you in a room and they will tell you, you have to agree.’ And I said, ‘Boys, there’s not a chance in hell I’m going to agree . . .’ And they all said, ‘Yes, you will, you just don’t understand, yes, you will.’ ”

He didn’t.

Supporters of the Bush tax deal blamed Newt for initially indicating he would go along and then refusing to do so.  But the evidence in the article is not clear, documenting that Newt insisted on time for consideration before making a commitment.

Call this whole story a parable of what is wrong with the Republican Party.  People who cut deals which sell out our principles are deemed reasonable, while those refuse to cut deals are called bomb throwers.  That’s the term Bush used in endorsing Romney in an oblique swipe at Newt.

In 1990 it was Newt, in 2011 it’s House Tea Party Republicans.  They were wrong in 1990 and they are wrong now.

And now they are propelling the ultimate deal cutter towards the nomination.  And once again, Newt is standing in their way.

Related: Defeat National Review.


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DINORightMarie | December 26, 2011 at 8:40 am

Any thoughts on this comment Newt and his campaign reps made about “It’s December 1941…..we need to re-group and re-focus….”

A lot of hay is being made that Newt is comparing his failure to get on the VA ballot to Pearl Harbor.

Just wondering what you might think about all this……. I am personally disappointed that I can vote for Newt, nor write him in on the primary ballot; nor can I vote for anyone other than Mitt or Paul.

The local Republican Party has been having a FB conversation about this over the weekend, and opinions are mixed. Is this Newt self-destructing, or just a set-back that will (hopefully) get his volunteers and campaign staffers fired up? I would love to hear your thoughts…..

I saw this linked on another blog:
“Virginia May Have Improperly Excluded Signatures From Perry, Gingrich. a Recount May Be Needed!…
There is a requirement in a Statewide General Election that the address be included, but there is no such requirement for a presidential primary. The number of signatures are the same, 10,000 and 400 per Congressional District. But the address requirements are different…
Hopefully, some attorney has already read the law and can explain why a missing address is a valid reason to disqualify a candidate from a Virginia Primary.”

    Stewman1965 in reply to Kitty. | December 26, 2011 at 11:08 am

    Without an address, how could they possibly verify the signatures, so what would be the sense of the certification process… Volunteers could just jot down 10,000 signatures and they couldn’t be rejected because they couldn’t be verified… That doesn’t sound legit..

      retire05 in reply to Stewman1965. | December 26, 2011 at 1:51 pm

      The same way they were accepted in 2000, 2004 and 2008. Any candidate reaching the 10K signature threshold was put on the ballot.

      Now the problem is that the new district lines for Virginia have been drawn, but are contested by the Democrats (remember, we can have districts that are 90% black like Sheila Jackson Lee’s district, but not 90% white). So it is quite possible that the 400 per district rule will be turned on its head when those lines are settled, probably in a federal court.

      There are some things that should bother you greatly about this:

      1) Mitt Romney basically running his campaign out of Bill Bollings campaign headquarters. Bolling is currently the Va. Lt. Governor, running against Ken Cucinelli for the office of Governor and is also Mitt Romney’s campaign manager in Virginia.

      2) the 15K signature threshold that eliminates the process of verifying signatures was only created in November, last month. Did Bolling know at that point, since he was the one to turn in Romney’s petitions, that Romney had met the 15K threshold? Was Bolling’s campaign staff soliciting signatures for Romney? When was he aware that Romney had reached the 15K mark? Did Bolling, as Lt. Governor, have access to voter lists that included the addresses? Since Virginia is an open primary, how many voters, who previously voted in the Democrat primaries, signed Mitt Romney’s petitions? We will never know because the NEW rules say that anyone with 15K signatures, or more, will not have the signatures scrutinized.

      3) why was Ron Paul certified with only 14,361 signatures without being verified first? Why could Paul not have to reach the 15K threshold but Gingrich and Perry did, in order to have their signatures accepted carte blanch?

      4) by reducing the primary to only two candidates, Virginia becomes a winner-take-all primary. Had there been 3, 4 or 6 candidates, the delegates would have been awarded proportionally. This eliminates the possibility of a three way split in the delegates and since I am sure that the Va GOP thinks Ron Paul cannot win, basically gives the primary to Mitt Romney. That thinking could backfire on the Va GOP as voters in Virginia cast a protest vote for Paul.

      It is possible that we will exit Super Tuesday and still not have a nominee. The nominee will basically have to win every one of the early voting states since those states are being fined half their delegates. Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina will have to award delegates proportionally, by percentage of votes taken by the candidate.

        VinceBrewster in reply to retire05. | January 7, 2012 at 1:51 am

        You really think anyone verifies signatures on petititons to put someone’s name on a ballot? If so, that would be doing considerably more than is done in Oklahoma to register _and_ vote.


Why do people care what Bob woodward or any establishment beltway media people have to say?

Is their opinion really any more important or valuable than an average voter who has woken up and now who pays attention intensely?

I’m sure Peggy Noonan has an opinion too, she voted for Obama ya know, so of course she’s an expert now on critism of Barry.

All these years I spent listening to these self indulgant elitist fools.

@Alex: “All these years I spent listening to these self indulgant elitist fools.”

I hear you. I am so cynical of conservative pundits and I absolutely despise the MSM. I have decided that I will never, ever “hold my nose” and vote for anyone. I will cast my vote for the most conservative candidate.

    LOL. Actually I’m a recovering liberal, a Howard Dean voting liberal. I was calling the Tommy Friedmans, and Paul Krugmans, the leftists “elitist fools”. Looks like they are on both sides of the political spectrum.

    I hear you, I’m an independent now, and will not be voting for dems, but people I feel are consitutional conservatives.

What is also not mentioned is that the Democrats reneged on the deal and increased spending anyway (and poor George signed it anyway even though he watched Reagan get sandbagged the same way.)

Why the big deal over Newt’s refusing to go along with their sell-out? Newt was only 2nd in power and the Republicans were in the minority.

What they actually MEAN is that Newt wouldn’t give that lying sack of sh!t Sununu and the NE RINO Bush cover for their deal.

They wanted the House Republicans to vote for it so they could squawk about “bipartisanship” when people went for Bush’s throat for reneging on his NO NEW TAXES promise.

BTW his promise wouldn’t have cost him so much if it weren’t for when and how he said it. He stood up on the platform trying to look and act (Bush, although a brave man, looks and acts like a milksop) like Clint Eastwood and made a flat statement, a pledge of honor if you will, to the Republicans watching. That he reneged on that promise so quickly even though he knew Reagan got hustled the same way showed how DUMB AND POLITICALLY NAIVE Bush was/is. Like so many there now.

THAT’S what caused him to lose the election more than anything – – – WE COULDN’T TRUST HIM.

That, I believe, is when “bipartisanship” began to be a constant meme put forth by the MSM to sell some deal where the Republicans are supposed to cave in to the Democrats “for the children” or something and RINO became the public watchword for conservatives.


The Bushes have done more damage to Republicans than the Democrats could have dreamed of doing. (Yeah, I voted for him twice though I knew it was a bad idea at the time. Once because Al Gore would’ve been worse. MUCH WORSE. Twice because I knew John F’n Kerry in the USN and he would’ve been a puppet just like we have now. MEA CULPA)

    The Bushes have done more damage to Republicans than the Democrats could have dreamed of doing. (Yeah, I voted for him twice though I knew it was a bad idea at the time. Once because Al Gore would’ve been worse. MUCH WORSE. Twice because I knew John F’n Kerry in the USN and he would’ve been a puppet just like we have now. MEA CULPA)

    We all did. Then we held our collective noses and voted for McCain and vowed NEVER AGAIN! And look where we are, stuck with the possibility of holding our collective noses once again for McRomney or indirectly, one way or the other, helping Obama get re-elected.

    Hope Change in reply to jakee308. | December 26, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    OMG, Jakee308, I hear you. H.W. Bush was WITH Reagan for 8 years and apparently didn;t learn a thing. Apparently so out of touch that he didn’t know what “read my lips” meant to actual Americans. The along come W. and i gave him the benefit of the doubt, woe is me! And not here is H.W. endorsing Romney!!!!

    You know, the CPUSA has a document from the 1960’s, with its goals, including to take over one or both political parties. I see that quasi-communists or worse are running the democrats. But are the quasi-communists or worse also running the republicans? how could it be possible that a political party that supposedly stands for freedom and smaller government could be this stupid? Really! Are they the party of stupid, as everyone says?? Or are they the party of supreme misdirection?

    Newt talks about the consultants and the damage they do with their courting of the “independents” and the “moderates.” What nonsense. Who would believe that? HELLO, HELLO, DOES ANYONE REMEMBER THE REAGAN DEMOCRATS? Where do you think the Reagan DEmocrats came from? They are Democrats who love liberty and want a future for their children!

    I am so mad at the Establishment Republicans that I found myself saying for the first time today that the Republican Establishment must be destroyed. I am furious with the GOP in Virginia. How is this different from how Obama won his races in Illinois. Cheating, dirty tricks, take your opponent out before any voting is done.

    I support Newt. I think he will win Virginia. I think he would be an outstanding president.

    Happy New Year, everyone!

      Hope Change in reply to Hope Change. | December 26, 2011 at 8:56 pm

      I meant, and NOW H. W. has endorsed Romney!! Talk about the wrong direction!

      And Barbara Bush’s cute, derogatory remarks about Sarah Palin! OH PLEASE! Sarah Palin understands the heart of America and those remarks showed me that Barbara Bush does not! I used to give Barbara Bush the benefit of the doubt. I read her books. I thought she was a person of honor. Barbara Bush’s remark about Sarah Palin sounded catty and was uncalled-for, utterly unnecessary and egregiously out of tune with the way we as Americans are feeling. Thanks, Barbara Bush, for pulling the curtain aside and letting us see who you really are! Now the H.W. endorsement for Romney does not come as a surprise.

      You really think you can float another Bush?

      Keep it up, Establishment, show us who you are!

      The world can be a better place than this. My 60’s idealism is engaged by Newt’s awesome ideas. I am SO with Newt.

      The Establishment wants to go along and get along, but our freedoms are being destroyed and apparently they don’t care. What good does it do me that the Bushes were jet pilots and nice men when their understanding of what it takes to keep a self-governing people FREE is so utterly lacking! The Bushes frittered away our energy.

      H.W. Bush PROMISED no new taxes and then folded like a cheap, broken-down shack. H.W. Bush frittered away our time, our donations, our volunteer hours, our hopes and dreams.


      Because of YOU, THE BUSHES, AND KARL ROVE, we have Obama. Because YOU didn’t understand what Reagan was teaching. YOU don’t understand the meaning of America.

      Because YOU, W. Bush, refused to explain the the American people what you were trying to accomplish. Because YOU let your dyslexia, or whatever it was, stop you from just coming to us as a regular person and telling us what you were doing. Because YOU let the news media make you look like a loser and a clown. I think you, W. and Rove, thought it was very noble to take the slings and arrows. But who paid the price? The people of the United States. Because of YOUR SILENCE about the big things, the big ideas of what America means, what it means that each individual is SOVEREIGN, we ended up with the current administration.

      Because YOU preen yourselves on how much of an ordinary citizen you are, now that you are out of office again. Because YOU don’t care that being an American is a LEARNED CULTURE and that as former presidents, you could help teach Americans– children, adults and recent immigrants alike, what this experiment in Self Government is all about! But NO.


      But to my fellow commenters who have given up, I say, please don’t give up!!!!

      I don’t agree that we’re doomed, not at all. I like what Newt Gingrich is talking about. I like his ideas. I like that he’s inviting me and all the American people to team up with him. I think we can shrink the X#$%&@ federal government and make it accountable.

      I think THAT is why all the Establishment Republicans are doing everything they can to stop Newt.

      Ann Coulter, I can’t explain. I wish someone would tell me what’s going on with her.

      But I’ll tell you what: I choose Newt’s plan over every single nay-sayer, Establishment or otherwise. Newt has solutions, and I want to try them. I LOVE the idea of Lean Six Sigma training or all appointees and all government workers. We can instill a culture in the government of continuous improvement!! Yes, the bureaucrats will hate it and resist, but over time, things will improve.

      I know it may sound odd, but in some way this is cashing the check of idealism that THOSE OF US WHO WERE NOT OF THE LEFT wrote in the 1960’s. The idealism of the summer of love was co-opted by the quasi-communists. But the summer of love wasn’t about communism.

      I think the alternative to trying to solve our problems FOR REAL, WITH BIG IDEAS, could be a world-wide economic depression. Romney could “manage” a big ol’ depression. Dandy. Maybe Romney could break pieces of the U.S. off and sell them. NO THANK YOU.

      But didn’t some WWII German general say, “God protects fools, children and the United States of America.” Let’s ask for help from our spiritual sources and step up to self-government and clear out all the quasi-communist ambushes and hidden dangers that have been placed in our government and body politic.

      and HAPPY NEW YEAR, and I”m so not kidding about that. (smiles)

    VinceBrewster in reply to jakee308. | January 7, 2012 at 2:22 am

    No doubt Bush’s reneging on “no new taxes” cost him plenty of votes; however, the main thing that cost him re-election was Ross Perot.

Newt cut a deal with Nancy Pelosi in an attempt to force us all into “agreeing” with global warming, whether we wanted to or not. No sympathy from me.

I haven’t chosen any candidate yet, but I hate what the GOP is doing. I hate feeling manipulated. I hate to see the GOP rip into our own people: Palin, Cain, Newt, everyone it seems but McRomney. The Dems don’t have to do anything as long as the GOP elitists are trying to maneuver their guy into place.

Sununu was one of the reasons I voted for Perot in ’92.

“People who cut deals which sell out our principles are deemed reasonable”

This is part of the narrative of “getting something done.”

Unfortunately, most of our politicians forget that sometimes it is better to do nothing.

We’re damned any way you slice it. The powers that be are upset that their man Mclame wasn’t elected in ’08, so they are determined to force Romney on us. They have no conservative credibility anymore because the regular folks have figured out that the establishment is only looking out for themselves. Maintain control and power at all costs is the establishments motto. There needs to be a third party, the Conservative Party, it is only when the establishment GOP feel sufficiently threatened that they will come our way and operate on principal rather than self-interest because it will be in their self-interest to have principals.

    Hope Change in reply to ldwaddell. | December 26, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    Or take over the republicans from within. Remember: Reagan won. And EVERYONE said he would lose. It can be done. Don’t give up. Uphold the tradition of being BORN FREE. And I don’t means the lions, although are wonderful. YOU’RE BORN FREE.

That government is best which governs least.”
— Thomas Paine

As in so many other endeavors in the world, American politics and business are continually mired in the inner workings of people pursuing their personal interests, and the consumers, shareholders or the electorate be damned.

I am getting SO TIRED of all this baloney. Nothing is what it seems, everything is but a mere deceptive presentation engineered to keep certain elites in power and nothing more.

I am coming to believe that the biggest problem we have in America today is that most of the electorate has no idea about what is actually going on. When you consider that all of us reading these blogs spend a great deal of time and effort to sift through all of the minutiae and gossip to put together our own mosaic of what is really going on, it’s no wonder that the charlatan Obama is at 49% approval.

I am extremely concerned that the future of this nation will be decided by people that have little real knowledge about what is actually happening. It seem the majority of regular people who do not have the time to cull through the inner workings of American politics are very easily manipulated, and thus we see the continual soap operas and deception in the MSM.

How the heck are the Republicans, who are extremely poor at messaging in the first place, going to convince the electorate that Obama has plundered our economy through celaborate schemes of corruption and faux supply side economics when it seems amongst their chief concerns are the acquisition of the latest Air Jordan sneakers and the progress about their local sports teams along with the lives of all of the trivial athletes and petty celebrities?

People, we’re fuc*ed!

Prof J, the GOP estalishment is rightly terrified of the Tea Party movement and what it means. They’ve “gone along to get along” and sold their souls to the (Social) Democratic Party to appear to be “reasonable” men and women. They are part and parcel of just what is wrong with Washington today. They’ll vote their “conscience” only when the end is predeteremined and their vote won’t really mean anything or hurt thier political prospects.

Much as the Blue Dog Democrats toed THEIR party line on ObamaCare…

Any GOP Congressman or Senator who has used earmarks is a corrupt as any of the worst on the other side of the aisle. It’s time to toss them ALL out of office. We certtainly get do much worse than we already are. After all, the current administration and the (Social) Democrats have added ONE THIRD TO THE NATIONAL DEBT IN THREE YEARS. That’s unconsionable by any measure, and they want to spend more.

Any GOP Congressman or Senator who voted for TARP or any of the other bailouts should be taken out behind the capital andd flogged. Any Congressman or Senator who has participated in increasing spending should be tarred and feathered…then flogged.

They are the problem and not part of the solution. Only be returning to 2006 spending level, then cutting those by 40% can we even begin to approach some sort of fiscal sanity. If Obama is reelected and Congress continues to spend at the levels they are today…we’ll be in the boat as Greece in 2015.

Rich Vail
PIkesville, Maryland

Christmas dinner report out:

We have a 50/50 family of Democrat and Republicans. I was surprised to see that two 2008 Obama voters were planning to vote for Newt in 2012.

I’ve not seen either of these two vote Republican for as long as I’ve followed politics. They are pissed off about the economy and they like what they remember about Newt. Also Newt connects with them as a very sharp pencil.

There was 100% agreement that Romney is probably stronger as a general manager, so the actual Republicans at the table were ideologically split.

Suffice to say if the vote were at Christmas dinner 2011, Anyone But Obama would have won.

1. To repeat what I’ve said before: no family except the Kennedys has done as much damage as the Bushes. When I compare the lunacy of Bush’s Second Inaugural Address to what’s happening in Egypt and elsewhere, I worry that the Bushes are gaining ground on the Kennedys.

2. Yet somehow they retain their influence in the GOP. Somehow Karl Rove the “architect”–the architect of the 2008/2008 Democrat blowout victories–has not been made persona non grata like Richard Darman was.

3. I view the Republican Establishment as a crony capitalist old boy network. I view the overall social conservative leadership as a Big Government movement. Therefore the socons have allied themselves with the kleptocratic branch of the GOP instead of the small-government branch.

4. Per ldwaddell, the Republican Establishment has repeatedly made it clear that they would rather control a minority party than share power in a governing party. Then let them experience what a real minority party feels like.

5. The risk of a third party is great, but IMO Bush’s smirk and Rove’s sneer (as it were) would eventually bring us to as grievous a pass as where Obama’s corrupt cluelessness is taking us.

6. Meanwhile, Obama’s reelection prospects at Intrade continue to creep upward from their October lows.

    1. Whose tax returns, showing artful deductions and a high income taxed at the capital gains rate, will magically appear if he is nominated?

    2. Obviously somebody continues to view Gingrich as a threat. It’s not yet clear whether the court clerk “forgot” the divorce documents are sealed or whether they were a matter of public record all along.

If your “view” of social conservatives were correct, there would be very few of them involved in the Tea Party.

Im experience, people who call themeselves “libertarian” and say “social issues don’t matter to me” often refuse to support a fiscal conservative who is also a social conservative.

    The words “overall” and “leadership” in I view the overall social conservative leadership as a Big Government movement are not there by accident.

    It’s the season for snowmen, not straw men.

Previous comment directed to gs – thought I had clicked “Reply.”

[…] A Parable of the Republican Establishment — And Everything That is Wrong With Them Posted in Government and Politics by TeeJaw on Monday, December 26, 2011, 2: 12 PM Professor Jacobson: […]

Who, exactly, constitutes the “overall social conservative leadership” that has allied itself with big government?

Do you agree that your characterization does not apply to social conservative Tea Partiers?

    Your comment consists of questions, not of counterclaims to my opinion. I am not on a witness stand subject to your interrogation.

      SmokeVanThorn in reply to gs. | December 26, 2011 at 7:07 pm

      If you can’t or won’t explain your generalization, so be it.

      It’s the season for snowmen, not snowjobs.

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