Tuesday, March 08, 2011
Prior to the election of 1994, the Democrats had held a majority in the House of Representatives for four decades. Working with a team of grassroots activists, Newt selected and trained candidates, shaped a political message , and become what Horowitz called "something rare in Republican politics - a genuine movement leader."With the exception of John McCain that is easily the strongest approval she gives of any current Republican leader. She clearly accepts that he is extremely capable and was walking the path she now is before him. It seems even the uncommitted accept he is the "most brilliant" possible candidate which is, or should be, a good qualification for running America. Incidentally Jerry Pournelle has a similar view.
To the left that meant one thing: he had to be eliminated. There are many fine Democrat public servants, but sadly many in the party have moved increasingly to the left, and often the beating heart of their political warfare has been the personal destruction of their political enemies. Generally speaking, after decades of failed social policies and weak national security positions, the party doesn't have a strong base of success from which to win political arguments. So it targets people instead of ideas.
Back in the 1990s, Democrats had Newt in their sights. And strangely enough, the more influential he became, the more "unethical" he became - at least if you counted the number of complaints filed against him. Horowitz wrote, "Eventually Democrats lodged seventy four separate charges against Gingrich, sixty five of which were summarily "laughed out of the committee."
Over time the cloud of ethical questions hanging over Newt reached critical mass. Instead of defending their own, Republicans on certain committees forced Newt to concede to one charge.
In my case, one by one, every ethics charge filed against me and my staff was tossed out. But there was one that was settled with a finding of no wrongdoing....
I presume that most of my readers know that Newt Gingrich is an old friend. I first met him when my phone rang and a voice announced that he was Newt Gingrich, a Congressman from Georgia, and he had just read A Step Farther Out and wanted to discuss it with me. He had got my phone number from the publisher. I had never had a cold call from a Congressman who didn't want money. Newt and I became friends, and I used to see him when I went to Washington...Energy policy is also Palin's area. I have said before that the most inspiring remark during the last Presidential campaign was her saying "Starting in January, in a McCain-Palin administration, we're going to lay more pipelines and build more nuclear plants". I don't think even honest "environmentalists" could deny that had that been done America would now be in at least its second year of good growth though they would think that a bad thing.
.. But I am in complete agreement with him that energy policy is perhaps the most important task of the United States today. We're in deep trouble, and until we staunch the bleeding, we won't solve our economic problems. We can't spend our way to prosperity, but we can divert a lot of our spending toward sensible energy policies.
I think the odds are quite heavily that Sarah Palin can secure the Republican nomination if she chooses. She is enormously popular with the grassroots. I am less sanguine that she can beat Obama,. I think it more than 50% likely she could because he is deservedly unpopular and she is an outstanding campaigner. Though she would deserve to more than 50% leaves a lot of uncertainty. The media smearing of her has been just so overwhelming that polls show that though nearly 50% approve strongly just over 50% think the opposite, which is not a good starting position.
I think it would be wise for the 2 of them to agree a common platform with Newt for President and Sarah for VP and Energy Secretary. This depends on Palin being much more ambitious to improve America than personally ambitious. I believe she is. Her saying that "I'll run if nobody else does" seems more reticent than one might expect.If so the very act of visibly sacrificing for the general good would greatly strengthen both her own and the ticket's popularity.
As a result 2 terms of Gingrish followed by 2 terms of Palin is an ideal result better than merely 2 terms for her would be. Running as VP and with a senior cabinet post would prove to everybody, perhaps even slightly to herself, that she has the experience for the top job. This would also heal the wounds that the Tea Party predominance in Republican victories has brought about without handing power back to "country club Republicans".
We know that the US media will go to absolutely any lengths to smear any progressives - Palin has already experienced this which gives her an advantage in that we know that had there been anything remotely approaching dirt it would already have been thrown. As VP candidate she would be well placed to carry the fight back to the media and since the greatest US media mogul is on record as saying that the government should impose China's one child policy on Americans too she has ammunition to use.
Once in power any leader risks falling under the sway of career civil servants (less so in America than Britain it still happens). The top job is always a lonely one. Newt and "Sarah Barracuda" together would be difficult to bring under the sway of anybody. He has an outstanding record of new policy development, including a commitment to X-Prizes. She is recognised as having a forensic eye for detail and pushing though policies against the vested interests.
I did suggest this in less detail before. Will they do it? Who knows but I see no downside to it from Newt's point of view and relatively little from hers.