When sometime in the next three to six weeks, pundits write Newt Gingrich’s 2012 political obituary, they will wonder why the seasoned politician hasn’t learned from his mistakes, indeed from mistakes made in the current campaign.
Considered an als0-ran for the better part of the campaign lat year, he zoomed up in the polls last November and December, largely due to his focus on the issues in the debates. His second chance.
His rise, however, met by a barrage of negative ads from the Romney campaign (and the Romney Super-pac), Newt’s poll numbers plummeted. In Iowa, he finished 16,000 votes behind Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney — and even 10,000 votes behind Ron Paul. “Voters,” Byron York wrote at the beginning of January, “who once supported Gingrich but have now turned away from him say that his hot-tempered response to the ads, rather than the ads themselves, simply turned them off.”
He finished fourth in New Hampshire — 74,000 votes behind Mitt Romney.
When, in South Carolina, he stopped whining, attacked the media and focused on the issues, he saw his fortunes reverse. He had a second second chance. He beat Romney by 75,000 votes in South Carolina.
Knowing how Romney had reacted to his rise, he should have anticipated the attacks — and realized that whining about negative ads hadn’t helped him in Iowa — or New Hampshire. The whining even earned him a rebuke from Rush Limbaugh. And so he squandered his second second chance.
FROM THE COMMENTS: V the K makes a good point:
I’ve repeated, ad nauseam, that Obama’s 2012 campaign will be a rerun of Harry Reid’s scorched Earth, demonize the opposition campaign of 2010. But it struck me this morning that Mittbot runs the risk of running a Sharron Angle campaign focused entirely on the flaws of the incumbent without articulating a clear alternative vision; a compelling reason for voters to vote for his agenda.
. . . which Sonicfrog counters:
Nope. Unlike Angle, Romney’s been in charge of things, has ample experience being an executive, and, most important, will definitely NOT run on his religious beliefs or say he was chosen by God to run.