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Right Turn
Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 12/02/2011

Morning Bits

His bombast knows no limits. “After saying recently that child labor laws are ‘truly stupid,’ Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich on Thursday told an Iowa audience that children in poor neighborhoods have ‘no habits of working’ nor getting paid for their endeavors ‘unless it’s illegal.’ ”

No limits to the potential for surprise story lines coming out of the Iowa caucuses. “Sioux City evangelical leader Cary Gordon, who played a role in the defeat of three Iowa Supreme Court justices in last year’s elections, will endorse Rick Santorum for president on Friday.” Refreshing to see a “values” leader back a candidate who has some.

No limits to the good things that may flow from the downfall of Bashar al-Assad: “When the Hezbollah leader, who has repeatedly plunged Lebanon in to crisis and into war, now has to say ‘we will not create a problem,’ tectonic plates are moving in the Middle East. Without understating Hezbollah’s strength and viciousness, the crisis of the Assad regime in Syria has already reduced its power. Assad’s fall will reduce it more. This is yet another reason why the United States should be doing all we can to bring Assad down, the sooner the better.”

There were no limits to his fawning over Freddie. “Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich touted the virtues of Freddie Mac’s business model in an interview published by the company in April 2007, remarks that contrast with the candidate’s recent statements that he had warned the company of impending financial disaster. The interview was featured on Freddie Mac’s website for several months in 2007 when he was a paid consultant to the company and Freddie Mac was was struggling to address mounting financial problems as the housing boom was turning to bust.” Which is worse — the shilling or misrepresenting the shilling?

No limits to the right’s willingness to overlook flaws, I suppose. “If Gingrich is the answer, Tea Party has failed, “ Joshua Green argues. “[S]ince being deposed as House speaker in 1999, he has earned millions of dollars by conducting himself in almost point-by-point contrast to what the Tea Party claims to stand for.” Read the whole thing.

No limits to his sanctimony. “Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich had some advice for his fellow Republican presidential candidate, embattled businessman Herman Cain: Stop, open up your heart, and think prayerfully about what you owe your family.” If only he’d taken his own advice, he might still be on Wife Number 1 or 2.

No limits to the carnage. “Syria is now in a state of civil war with more than 4,000 dead and increasing numbers of defecting soldiers taking up arms against the government of President Bashar al-Assad, the top United Nations human rights official said on Thursday. ‘We are placing the figure at 4,000, but really the reliable information coming to us is that it is much more than that,’ UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay told a news conference.”

No limits to the problems Gingrich will cause, Charles Krauthammer patiently explains: “Given his considerable service to the movement, many conservatives seem quite prepared to overlook his baggage, ideological and otherwise. This is understandable. But the independents and disaffected Democrats upon whom the general election will hinge will not be so forgiving.They will find it harder to overlook the fact that the man who denounces Freddie Mac to the point of suggesting that those in Congress who aided and abetted it be imprisoned, took $30,000 a month from that very same parasitic federal creation. Nor will independents be so willing to believe that more than $1.5 million was paid for Gingrich’s advice as ‘a historian’ rather than for services as an influence peddler.” That’s a very gentle way of telling his fellow conservatives to wise up.

No limits to the contempt for Obama’s Iran policy, even among Democrats. “A Democratic senator Thursday angrily accused Obama administration officials of doing an about-face on a bipartisan Senate plan designed to stifle funding for Iran’s nuclear weapons work. . . . ‘I am extremely disappointed,” [Sen. Robert] Menendez said, expressing bewilderment over why the officials in those meetings didn’t simply request that both senators scrap their amendments. ‘You have rebuffed us every step of the way,’ Menendez said, alleging that Congress has provided the very tools that have produced the success with sanctions against Tehran of which the White House now takes ownership. ‘We need to cut off the fuel!’ Menendez roared at one point. The senator berated State and Treasury department officials for several minutes, then stewed in his seat after his allotted time had expired.” Could make for a good GOP ad for 2012.

By  |  07:45 AM ET, 12/02/2011

Categories:  Morning Bits

 
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