ONE SINGULAR SENSATION

A Monday morning smile. What I think I love most is that the traffic just keeps flowing down Broadway even as this is going on.

NEWT IN A NUTSHELL

From my pal Bill Press about the latest Republican who feels we should entrust our futures to his good judgment:

No, No, Not Newt!
By Bill Press

Tribune Media Services

. . . Forget the personal stuff about Newt Gingrich. . . .

No, it’s not his personal life. It’s all the other baggage that’ll sink the Newt. Our memories are not that short.

This is the guy who shut down the government in 1995. This is the guy who whined because President Clinton wouldn’t let him sit up front on Air Force One — only to have the White House release a photo of Newt actually chatting with the president, up front, on Air Force One. This is the guy who was reprimanded by the House of Representatives, 395 to 28, and ordered to pay a $300,000 fine for violating House ethics rules — when he was Speaker! And this is the guy who was forced to resign as Speaker after Republicans lost five seats in the 1998 midterm elections.

And now he wants to be president?

This is the guy full of bad ideas, then and now. In 1993, Gingrich insisted that President Clinton’s economic plan, which included higher taxes on the wealthiest Americans, would be a disaster. “I believe this will lead to recession next year,” he predicted. “This is the Democrat (sic) machine’s recession, and each of them will be held personally accountable.” Instead, Clinton’s plan led to a record eight years of economic growth, the creation of 23 million new jobs and the only balanced budget in recent memory.

Newt’s record is no better today. This is the guy who, on March 7, called for bombing Libya immediately. Yet, two weeks later, after President Obama had actually ordered the bombing of Libya, Gingrich declared it was a mistake to intervene. And, yes, this is the same guy who’s actually campaigning on a pledge to abolish the Environmental Protection Agency, created by Republican President Richard Nixon. Meanwhile, according to The Daily Beast, in 2010 his American Solutions organization received $1.5 million in contributions from oil, coal and power companies who want to continue polluting the environment.

And now he wants to be president?

And, yes, this is the same guy who introduced the politics of personal destruction to Washington. Gingrich alone turned the Congress from a place where, in between elections, members of both parties would sit down together and try to solve problems — to a place known for its non-stop campaigning and partisan political sniping. It was Gingrich who gave Republicans a list of words to describe themselves: “courage, dream, opportunity, vision, freedom, strength, moral.” And a separate list for Democrats: “incompetent, sick, radical, destructive, shallow, liberal, anti-flag, traitors.”

In fact, there is no one in American politics more guilty of sliming his political opponents. Overlooking his own ethical problems, Gingrich blamed Democrats for producing “the greatest political corruption ever seen in modern America.” He declared that the Obama administration “represents as great a threat to America as Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union once did.” He accused gay rights advocates of trying to impose a “gay and secular fascism.” And he slammed Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor as a “Latina woman racist.”

And now Newt wants to be president?

Bill Press is host of a nationally syndicated radio show and author of a new book, “Toxic Talk,” available in bookstores now. You can hear “The Bill Press Show” at his Web site: billpressshow.com. His email address is: bill@billpress.com.

© 2011 Tribune Media Services, Inc.

 

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