Political Animal


June 21, 2011 1:40 PM Stick a fork in him

By Steve Benen

Not quite two weeks ago, the entire senior staff for Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign resigned en masse. The same day, the entire staff he’d assembled in Iowa also quit.

Gingrich later said he found it “liberating” to have his team abandon him a month into his national campaign. If that’s true, Newt must be feeling really free today, now that his national finance team has also quit.

The top fundraisers for Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign have abandoned his struggling bid amid anemic fundraising and heavy spending.

Campaign spokesman R.C. Hammond is confirming to The Associated Press that fundraising director Jody Thomas and fundraising consultant Mary Heitman have left the team. […]

People familiar with Gingrich’s campaign spending say his fundraising has been weak since he launched his bid and that he has racked up large travel bills.

I know the literati sent out their minions to do their bidding, but who knew the literati’s minions would end up abducting Gingrich’s entire campaign operation?

Keep in mind, the national finance team are the folks who were helping keep the campaign financially viable. Now that they’ve quit, it’s probably a mistake to even call Gingrich’s bid a “campaign.”

Also note, Gingrich brought this upon himself. Even when fundraising was weak, he spent freely, chartering a fancy jet for a three-day swing through Iowa last month, for example, at a cost of $40,000.

Now Gingrich has been reduced to scheduling events within driving distance of his home.

At least for now, the disgraced former Speaker insists he’s going to stay in the race, but his willingness to keep trying is irrelevant. He has no campaign operation, no financial resources, no work ethic, and no popularity.

Whether he chooses to remain an official candidate, Gingrich’s campaign is over.

Steve Benen is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly, joining the publication in August, 2008 as chief blogger for the Washington Monthly blog, Political Animal.


  • John Dillinger on June 21, 2011 1:50 PM:

    And does anyone for a moment think that this catastrophic failure will give pause to Sunday bookers when are they filling out their weekly lineup cards?

  • Mimikatz on June 21, 2011 1:52 PM:

    So a campaign can't be run on self-generated fuel from a gasbag.

    I think it was just to get some more money and TV time. He can't have been so delusional as to think he could really win even a primary, let alone the nomination or general.

  • Burr Deming on June 21, 2011 1:53 PM:

    I suspect Newt Gingrich would still be known by a very small circle as a mediocre professor if he had not learned the one single word from Alvin Toffler that made him appear an intellectual.

  • DAY on June 21, 2011 1:53 PM:

    The entire GOP crew are starting to resemble "The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight."

  • martin on June 21, 2011 1:58 PM:

    Newt's got 'em just where he wants him. He's just waiting for the Repubs to see the dim light generated by all of the other Repub losers and come begging to him to be the next Prez.

  • efgoldman on June 21, 2011 2:00 PM:

    He's already booked the white horse, to come riding to the rescue at a brokered convention.
    Old Newtie never was really good at this reality thing.

  • Jon on June 21, 2011 2:05 PM:

    He has no campaign operation, no financial resources, no work ethic, and no popularity.

    But he'll always be welcome as a valued contributor to Fox News.

  • Roger the Cabin Boy on June 21, 2011 2:07 PM:

    Fox should be hiring him any day now. Or not, he might be too much even for them.

    BTW, anyone wanna bet that Callista's doin' a Newt on him with some young hunk? Imagine waking up next to that whale every morning. Just sayin'......

  • Jamie on June 21, 2011 2:17 PM:

    It couldn't happen to a nicer guy. It does say something when Gingrich is thrown from the train because he isn't conservative enough for the true believers.

  • Perspecticus on June 21, 2011 2:27 PM:

    On the plus side, his credibility as a serious policy analyst and idea man for teevee shows will likely be stronger than ever. So, there's that.

  • c u n d gulag on June 21, 2011 2:33 PM:

    Somehow, I suspect he'll enjoy having plenty of spare time. He's still a rich prick, after all.

    And I'm sure that Press the Meat, Mace the Nation, and FOX You's will still keep his fat self on speed-dial.

  • Trollop on June 21, 2011 2:37 PM:

    Well, it's back to the Greek Isles (and Tiffany's)!

    I cannot thank pretend deity enough for this one!

    Hey Newt, how about another Zig Wiggler tour?

  • jim filyaw on June 21, 2011 2:48 PM:

    just wonderin' what if this tub of lard actually got himself elected president? would the entire executive department resign six months in?

  • hell's littlest angel on June 21, 2011 3:11 PM:

    As the rest of the herd leaves behind this weak, old and degenerate elephant, you can bet the lions are saying to each other, "Let's wait for something a bit more edible."

  • stevio on June 21, 2011 3:20 PM:

    He has no campaign operation, no financial resources, no work ethic, and no popularity.

    Are you sure you're not talking about Rudi jiuliani? Newt , turns out, was just that; A newt.

  • Matt on June 21, 2011 3:25 PM:

    I've always said we've got the best minions in the business.

  • st john on June 21, 2011 3:52 PM:

    He is going to prove the wisdom of cutting revenue(i.e. taxes for the wealthy) that will create jobs and lift the economy by not spending any money. His revenue has been cut and his campaign is in full swing...from a tree.

  • Jon on June 21, 2011 4:01 PM:

    Newt can waste your money far more effectively than any darn government program can, thus again proving he superiority of the free market.

  • sceptic on June 21, 2011 4:19 PM:

    He reminds me of the Black Knight in the Monty Python movie......"It's just a flesh wound".

  • rrk1 on June 21, 2011 6:01 PM:

    Newt still doesn't realize he's yesterday. It isn't 1992 anymore! Just how he thinks he might appeal to young conservatives is a big mystery. He might just as well be riding around in a Model A Ford, as a $40,000 jet rental. In fact, he might do better with the older set if he did ride around in a Model A. Think Scott Brown in his pickup.

    Newt's turned himself into a late night monologue joke, oh, he's been one for twenty years, I forgot. No matter, the Sunday Rethug circuses will still have him on every week because he obviously has keen political insight. Oh, what a travesty the political discourse in this country has become!

  • Clovis Potter on June 21, 2011 6:35 PM:

    Like every fraudster, he rides on hopeful ignorance. They claim to be famous and powerful and attract groupies who want to be part of the play. So they run with the money of idiots and continue until -

    Well, in private life, they go to jail, like Ms Hathaway's former love, but in politics,they just hit the lecture circuit or join the pigpen at Faix Noise.

  • Skip on June 21, 2011 6:55 PM:

    Couldn't happen to a bigger asshole. Maybe there really is a god watching over this circus...naaaaaaaaaaaaa.

  • yellowdog on June 21, 2011 7:50 PM:

    Won't be long before Newt comes up with a way to blame his demise on:

    -the liberal media and its plants deep inside the Tiffany's power structure
    -the inability of mortals to comprehend his immense brilliance and patriotism
    -the high barriers a regular-guy outsider faces when he promises to shake things up in Washington
    -the hit-job tactics of villainous John Lithgow
    -the resentment others feel toward very smart people - geniuses know how to deal with mockery
    -the Clintons and Sixties liberalism - [by force of habit]

    One day, Newt, we will understand the great leader we could have chosen. Until then, bud, pack it in.

  • Patrick on June 22, 2011 1:47 PM:

    Buh bye asshole. Actually I hope he stays in and continues to be humiliated. It will cost me money though cuz I will have to buy more popcorn.