Newt Goes Off on CNN's John King for Marriage Question

There's yet another Repbulican debate tongight. I didn't see it, but apparently Newt went off on CNN's John King for asking about the ABC News interview with his ex-wife Marianne that will air tonight on Nightline. Here's Newt:

"I think the destructive, vicious, negative nature of much of the news media makes it harder to govern this country, harder to attract decent people to run of for public office and I am appalled that you would begin a presidential debate on a topic like that," Gingrich said.

"Every person in here knows personal pain. Every person in here has had someone close to them go through painful things. To take an ex-wife, and make it two days before the primary a sign question in a presidential campaign, is as close to despicable as anything I can imagine," Gingrich said.

How clever (not.) A family values spokesman who asks his wife for an open marriage and carries on a 6 year extra-marital affair is now a victim of "personal pain." I wonder if his daughter, the one who's an expert at messaging and branding, came up with that.

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    Newt's very presence in this race (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by Anne on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:26:33 PM EST
    is proof of the difficulty in attracting decent people to run for public office.

    Love how he turns it all around to "every person knows personal pain," to deflect from the personal pain he has been responsible for inflicting on women he married and vowed to stay true to.

    He thinks it's despicable for the media to raise his personal behavior?  Why, because we might take the next step and juxtapose it against his family values moralizing?

    I'm surprised the collective guffaw his faux outrage - that he probably practiced all day - generated didn't cause an avalanche somewhere.

    What a horrid little man he is.

    Alert: shallow content in following text (none / 0) (#68)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Jan 21, 2012 at 09:33:18 AM EST
    did you ever notice how he walks with his belly leading and his palms facing backwards?  It's weird.  Most of us walk with our palms facing in to our bodies.  
    It's as if he went to the school of schlump.

    Is he saying he's a decent person (none / 0) (#2)
    by nycstray on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:04:56 PM EST
    or the reason the right is running batsh!t crazy people is because of the media?

    just askin . . . .

    he quite pointedly (none / 0) (#4)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:06:21 PM EST
    did not address the decency of his personage.

    we can laugh (none / 0) (#3)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:05:12 PM EST
    but that question was a gift to Newt and he unwrapped it masterfully.  however craven it might have been.

    I thought Ricky did well.

    Romney got booed (none / 0) (#5)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:08:24 PM EST
    when talking about his taxes

    I can't believe how bad Romney was (none / 0) (#18)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:51:41 PM EST
    tonight.  If this is how confident vs. arrogant he is under pressure you never had a hope facing Obama.  Republicans can smell fear in a man like sharks sense blood in the water and they despise it.  That's where Gingrich and Santorum will have a following, they are both so fearless when being complete idiots it is literally unfathomable.  They don't stand a chance against Obama either, but I never dreamed Romney would be this pathetic at this juncture facing down these guys.  Do they have evidence on him that he slept with an intern?

    Romney seemed to be channeling Rick Perry (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by byteb on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 10:12:45 PM EST
    tonight for a few of his more incoherent answers.

    it was amazing (none / 0) (#52)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:39:52 AM EST
    especially on the tax thing.  how on earth could he possibly be so unprepared for such an obvious question.

    Donald...check out Calvin's take (none / 0) (#32)
    by DFLer on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 11:17:52 PM EST
    at the New Yorker, inspired by this excerpt from the NYT re Mitt's behavior:

    When Mitt Romney introduces himself to voters, he has a peculiar habit of guessing their age or nationality, often incorrectly. (A regular query: "Are you French Canadian?")
    When making small talk with locals, he peppers the conversation with curious details. . . . Mr. Romney has developed an unlikely penchant for trying to puzzle out everything from voters' personal relationships to their ancestral homelands. . . . Mr. Romney likes to congratulate people. For what, exactly, is not always clear.

    --The Times, December 28, 2011.

    Trilling's essay that follows that is high-larious


    here's a link to the original article (none / 0) (#34)
    by DFLer on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 11:29:29 PM EST
    Interesting. If Romney (none / 0) (#65)
    by Towanda on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 12:14:33 PM EST
    really, regularly uses the "French Canadian" query, that is code in the upper Midwest, from which he came.  It's the age-old Easterners' euphemism for part Native American and also conveys their strident anti-Catholicism.

    I thought his going off on John King (none / 0) (#6)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:11:27 PM EST
    was less interesting than the standing ovation he got for doing it.

    herman cain got cheers too (none / 0) (#13)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:35:12 PM EST
    it won't mattter. SC has 9 electoral votes and it's a weak Repbulican state. (Obama got 45% last time.)

    And while SC always slings the mud (none / 0) (#46)
    by jbindc on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 07:51:26 AM EST
    In every GOP primary since at least 1980, they have voted for the eventual nominee.

    So while they like the crazies on display, they vote for the more mainstream candidate.


    and (none / 0) (#50)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:34:44 AM EST
    what if they dont this time?

    Maybe they won't (none / 0) (#61)
    by jbindc on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 10:42:59 AM EST
    But Romney just came out with another big endorsement today - the governor of Virginia (where Newtie isn't even on the ballot). As of a couple of days ago (which could change, grant you). Romney is up an average of almost 19 points in Florida.  With the birth of Super PACs, candidates that have no business staying in the race can hold on a little longer than they would have in the past. People in the know, in the party, still don't see an upset coming on.

    Also, the debate audiences (which I hate, by the way - there should be NO audience, IMO) are picked ala Jerry Springer, for the maximum TV viewing effect. And, don't forget, the evangelical vote is still gonna be split between Newtie and Santorum.  How that will affect the primary, we don't know yet, and with 20% of Perry supporters saying they would back Romney, it's anyone's guess at this point.

    And if Newtie wins, it still doesn't mean anything.  He will never be the nominee, and Mitt may be a little bruised, but all this does is give him more time to polish his answers so when the Dems try to hit him with the same arguments, it's already out there.


    Mitt (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by CoralGables on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 11:02:37 AM EST
    has been trying to polish his answers for about 5 years now.

    heh (none / 0) (#73)
    by Capt Howdy on Sat Jan 21, 2012 at 03:26:03 PM EST
    see, if I was you this is where I would trot out this canard:

    In every presidential primary since 1980, the state has backed the candidate that eventually clinched the Republican nomination.

    which if Romney has won you absolutely without doubt would have trotted out since you already have in the last 24 hours

    by jbindc on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 07:51:26 AM EST
    In every GOP primary since at least 1980, they have voted for the eventual nominee.

    but I an not you and I have far less fondness for canards and conventional wisdom and so I wont.
    because the truth is I dont think it necessarily means anything beyond being an interesting bit of trivia.


    TPM (none / 0) (#53)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:50:20 AM EST
    On Wednesday and Thursday, a flood of polls came in showing major movement for Gingrich -- he went from ten points down to leading in some of them, and all within a period of two days. The trend was clear and best exemplified by NBC/Marist data: the day before the Republican debate, Romney was ahead by fifteen. The day after he was only behind by five. By the time Public Policy Polling (D), Rasmussen and InsiderAdvantage conducted snap polls on Wednesday, Newt was ahead

    This is state of the race at the moment -- zoom in by clicking and dragging to see the huge Newt surge in the last few days.

    and this was before last night and the question/response that has conservatives swooning.


    if he wins SC (none / 0) (#48)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:18:41 AM EST
    which would bring a flood of money and goes into FL with mo where not long ago he was 20 or 30 points ahead it could matter a lot.

    and if Romney continues to trip over himself it could also matter.


    it was disgusting display of arrogance by Newt (none / 0) (#8)
    by Lil on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:19:35 PM EST
    and it disgusts me that millions of people will vote for him if he gets the nomination. And I'm fearing he just might pull it off. Not a proud American tonight.

    Arrogance? (none / 0) (#14)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:44:34 PM EST
    Since when were politicians expected to actually answer a question during a televised debate? Isn't attacking the premise of the question a time-honored debating technique?

    After all, Newt was not really trying to answer Jon King, any more than King was really interested in hearing his answer. The response was directed to the SC Republican electorate, who may have found it appropriate. I did, and I'm just an independent observer.

    If the national media are going to stoop to the level where they become gossip columnists and participants in smear campaigns while purporting to be covering something as serious and important an election for President, then they deserve to get called on it. We are electing a Chief Executive, not a Sunday School superintendent.


    his arrogance is about his complete hypocricy (none / 0) (#17)
    by Lil on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:51:03 PM EST
    That is so damn relevant. Blame the media when it is convenient, use the media to skewer Clinton, etc.. Pretend you gotten some sort of "redemption" which absolves you with the crazy base.the best tweet of the night regarding this is @Daveweigel This reminds me of the time Gingrich BLEW UP at the media for covering the Lewinsky scandal.

    But wait!!!!!!!!!!! (none / 0) (#26)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 10:26:21 PM EST
    All the Demos told us sex was personal and none of our business.....

    Where they wrong?

    And since I agreed with them them about Clinton, it kinda bust my chops when they suddenly change their minds.

    Makes me think they were just funning me.


    Can't speak for "all the demos," but... (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by huzzlewhat on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 10:42:53 PM EST
    I couldn't care less about Gingrich's sex life, any more than I cared about Clinton's. Personally, I'd rather not think about Gingrich's sex life at all. The thing that disgusts me about it isn't the behavior -- that's between him and his wives and his kids. It's that he was one of the chief cheerleaders for impeaching Clinton, putting on holier-than-thou airs and pretending and moral rectitude while his behavior was as bad or worse. It's the unblushing, in-your-face hypocrisy that pisses me off about him; I wouldn't give a damn about what Gingrich did if he hadn't given so much of a damn about what Clinton did. The whole impeachment sideshow circus was designed to destabilize the presidency, and it wasn't as if we didn't know it at the time, but it stings all the more to have it rubbed in our face by knowledge of just how cynical a pretense that moral pose was. I hate it when politicians cynically work the country up into a lather for no reason.

    and not only that, (none / 0) (#29)
    by Lil on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 10:50:13 PM EST
    I don't hear him getting all worked up when the media is bashing Dems,or Romney or any of his opponents, then it's just fine, but when he's on the hot seat, the media is despicable. pfft.

    and it's not the sex (none / 0) (#30)
    by Lil on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 10:51:43 PM EST
    it's his arrogant hypocricy

    But politicians DO have a reason ... (none / 0) (#36)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 11:36:08 PM EST
    ... when they "cynically work the country up into a lather" -- they do it to win the support of the voters. Maybe you don't like that explanation, but that is politics, as it has been practiced since time immemorial.

    So I, for one, expect it. What galls me is when the news media cynically work the country up into a lather for the sole reason of improving their ratings. IMO, that is a far greater cause for complaint.


    seriously? (none / 0) (#69)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Jan 21, 2012 at 10:07:56 AM EST
    I am no fan of the media, but they are not deciding major policy about what law rules this nation.  I am slightly less worried about them.

    I don't apply the same standard ... (none / 0) (#72)
    by cymro on Sat Jan 21, 2012 at 02:08:43 PM EST
    ... to politicians and the media. Whereas I expect politicians to bend the truth, if not to outright lie about some things to advance their own cause, I expect the news media to check their facts carefully and be unbiased in their presentation of those facts.

    Yes... (none / 0) (#74)
    by huzzlewhat on Mon Jan 23, 2012 at 04:54:13 PM EST
    I've been following politics since I was in grade school. I'm now happily entrenched in middle age. So I do know how things work.

    But after over 30 years of watching this stuff, I have reached a point of, well, "false outrage fatigue," I guess you'd call it. It's completely transparent, when you know to look for it, and yet I watch the hue and cry from the people who get revved up by politicians who are so transparently not outraged by the things that they pretend to be outraged by. I've passed through the acceptance stage of "that's just what politicians do" to base-level contempt when I see them doing it.


    I understand those feelings (none / 0) (#75)
    by cymro on Tue Jan 24, 2012 at 05:13:06 PM EST
    These days, I usually just yawn and change the channel!

    I'll agree with you (none / 0) (#31)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 11:12:08 PM EST
    on this one. I don't give a damn about his sex life, or the sex life of any other politician.

    Donald, et al (none / 0) (#44)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 07:08:36 AM EST
    Oh I agree that the Repubs shouldn't have zapped Clinton for having sex with a very young intern and then lying about it. I'm sure all our leaders do such stuff. I mean, he who casts the first stone, etc.

    But the point is, if you're gonna try and set a standard, you can't decide to toss the standard away when it is to your advantage.

    And it was even worse politics, as it was against Clinton.

    Or did everyone but me miss the cheers when Newt was whipping CNN's talking head?


    Really? (5.00 / 0) (#58)
    by Yman on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 10:22:32 AM EST
    But the point is, if you're gonna try and set a standard, you can't decide to toss the standard away when it is to your advantage.

    I guess you missed Newt's moralizing when he was pushing for Clinton's impeachment.

    Or did everyone but me miss the cheers when Newt was whipping CNN's talking head?

    You mean the same Tea Party/Republican crowd that boos a gay soldier asking about DADT from a combat zone?  They would cheer anyone pulling the two-fer that Newt was - 1) distracting from Newt's (and their own) hypocritical moralizing, and 2) blaming the "lib-rul" media for their own actions.

    That's called (appropriately enough) a "no-brainer".


    Sex is only an issue if a Democrat has it. (5.00 / 0) (#63)
    by Repack Rider on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 11:25:18 AM EST
    But the point is, if you're gonna try and set a standard, you can't decide to toss the standard away when it is to your advantage.

    Newt set the standard.  Now he says is is not valid.

    How many times would it have to be explained to you?  REPUBLICANS care about sex, but only when Democrats have it.  When it isn't a Democrat  such as Bill Clinton, David Wiener, John Edwards or Gary Hart, IOKIYAR.  David Vitter is still in the Senate.  Newt is still a viable candidate.  John Ensign stayed in the Senate for two years after his affair with a staffer was revealed.

    Wiener, Edwards and Hart lost their reputations and any chance at holding elective office, and Clinton was impeached, for doing what Vitter, Ensign and Gingrich did.  Since Vitter hired a prostitute, his act was also criminal as well as tawdry.

    No we DON'T care about the sex.  We care about the naked hypocrisy of Newt suggesting that Democrats are unfit for office for doing exactly what Mr. Gingrich (and Vitter and Ensign) was doing.


    jim (5.00 / 0) (#70)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Jan 21, 2012 at 10:29:47 AM EST
    get over it.... the whole impeachment fiasco was ridiculous and a waste of time and money. It did more damage to republicans than it did to Clinton.  It damaged the country because it was a constant distraction, keeping a damn good president from paying 100% attention to his job.
    The problem with Newt is not his sex life, it's the hypocrisy. He has no room for self righteousness. He was doing these things at the TIME he was using the media to try to destroy Clinton's presidency based on much less egregious behavior.  

    Sorry (none / 0) (#66)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 04:15:23 PM EST
    But the Repubs, not my party, set the hypocrite standard.

    You guys set the standard for defending sex as private.

    Now you are attacking it....

    Which makes you guys as much of hypocrites as the Repubs.


    It is private ... (5.00 / 0) (#67)
    by Yman on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 04:21:25 PM EST
    ... unless you choose to make it public by campaigning as a "family values" candidate while hopping on the high horse of morality - as Newt did.

    BTW - The "Repubs" aren't your party?  You can try to call yourself an "Independent" all you want, but when was the last time you voted for a Democrat (or even a non-Republican) for POTUS?



    The establishment wants Romney ... (none / 0) (#9)
    by cymro on Thu Jan 19, 2012 at 09:22:48 PM EST
    ... and they are ganging up on Newt. But the Republican voters still seem to be looking for an alternative to Romney.

    So it may be a while before the current field of four is reduced further, and when it happens, I think Rick Santorum will be the next to go, not Newt. Ron Paul will be there until the convention, I believe, since he seems to have a solid base of support that will not waver.

    Didn't watch the debate (none / 0) (#47)
    by jbindc on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:08:53 AM EST
    But everything I've read this morning (and watched a little MSNBC last night after the debate) said Newt had the first few minutes which were very good and then the rest was so-so.  Santorum had a really good debate, but it won't matter since he will be done within a couple of weeks.  And Romney fumbled on some questions, but also had a solid performance, including getting digs in at Newt for his supposedly close working relationship with Ronald Reagan, when in fact, Reagan barely knew his name. He also had a good solid answer on his wealth - he earned it and shouldn't be taken to task for being successful. (you can argue the truthfulness of each statement, but that's not what we're talking about, especially as Newtie had a bunch of whoppers himself).

    Newt could very well win Saturday, but Florida?  Don't see it. Even winning tomorrow will be hard - who you see in the audience at these debates are not ALL Republican voters in SC.  They stack the audiences. As I said upstream, SC always loves it some crazy in the GOP contests, but they ALWAYS vote for the more mainstream candidate.


    Please stay on topic (none / 0) (#39)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 12:37:45 AM EST
    Newt and the debate question about his wives

    Newt opens up his personal life for (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by Anne on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 07:20:30 AM EST
    inspection, he makes it fair game for questioning, when he runs on a family values platform, sits in judgment of the personal lives of others, and seeks to use the power of government to impose his beliefs on matters affecting our personal lives even as he fails to hold himself to those same standards.

    Which is why Newt's lecture, delivered with such outrage, on the destructive force of the media being the reason it's so hard to find decent people to serve the public, even as he fails to address the indecency of being a serial adulterer who has probably caused more personal pain than he has suffered, ought to be thrown right back in his sour, caved-in face.

    I don't know what happens in South Carolina tomorrow, but I have yet to see anything good come out of the GOP primary process so far; this is one sorry-ass bunch of presidential wanna-bes, and I don't see any signs that that's going to change any time soon.

    I just wish we had an actual Democratic incumbent fighting for a solidly Democratic platform, instead of someone who wraps Republican policy and ideas in a package that may be saner and personally scandal-free, but still comes with plenty of rigidity, judgment and authoritarian flavor.


    Newt did not push Clinton Impeachment (none / 0) (#40)
    by loveed on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 02:21:17 AM EST
     The young repub. was staging a mutiny against Newt.
     You will not find one clip of Newt encouraging the impeachment.
     I can't remember his name. But I think it's Dan Burton (not the one who shot the watermelon) He filed articles of impeachment against Bill Clinton in January of 1993. I laugh at this, thought it was absurd.
     Until we went through Whitewater,filegate, travelgate, Vince Foster, ect.. There were so many attacks against the Clintons.
     The repub party made infidelity a issue. Now Bill just had a little oral sex. But with the help of the media. The repubs impeached Bill.
     Newt can be outrage about the question. But it does not change the facts.
     1. He cannot be trusted to keep his marriage vows
       to any wife. He swore before God 3 times (so far).If he can't keep his promise to his wife X3,he won't keep his promise to the country.
     2.He wanted and open marriage or he just wanted to sneak around for another 6yrs.
     3. He married his high school teacher shortly after graduation. He was having a affair with her as a student.
     Newt can side step this issue. But there will never be a first mistress.
     What I find hilarious is ,wife number 3 will not let Newt out of her sight. She knows she may next.


    There was no "mutiny" ... (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Yman on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 10:35:53 AM EST
    ... over the impeachment - Newt didn't take center stage (for what are now obvious reasons), but he certainly pushed for impeachment:

    Even so, Gingrich was hardly a bystander to the process. "[T]here is no denying that Gingrich is keeping an extraordinarily tight reign" on the House's proceedings, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported in April 1998. Gingrich often negotiated directly with top White House aides, and it was Gingrich who personally rejected a September 1998 offer for Clinton to make a plea-bargain deal that would head off the spectacle of public impeachment proceedings.

    Indeed, at times Newt seemed to be enjoying Clinton's scandal thoroughly. "I will never again, as long as I am Speaker, make a speech without commenting on this topic," he proclaimed that April. He didn't wind up making good on that promise, mostly avoiding the public bluster of fervent Clinton-haters like DeLay. But Gingrich did press impeachment as a political issue at a critical--and in hindsight disastrous--moment. On the eve of the 1998 midterm elections, Gingrich ordered a round of harsh television ads on the scandal, in which distressed suburban moms asked one another, "What did you tell your kids?"


    actually that is not true (none / 0) (#49)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:33:36 AM EST
    Santorum showed a bit of spine in not jumping on the demagog wagon.  he gave a thoughtful answer.  

    it was his best debate all around.

    I just heard that (none / 0) (#51)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 08:37:34 AM EST
    the Gingrich people were so please with his handling of the question last night that his daughters canceled all their scheduled morning show appearances they had set up to defend him.

    If that's the kind of mileage that causes them (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 09:23:28 AM EST
    to take a day off, no wonder his campaign has floundered twice now.  Soon it will be three times.  You don't cancel, you update, you clarify and celebrate unless you have nothing to celebrate and you don't dare clarify.  Santorum says he's laying off of him on it.  Paul doesn't care.  Will Romney lay off?  Or are they all relying on Super PACs to kept hammering him on it?

    that question is all that is being talked (none / 0) (#55)
    by Capt Howdy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 09:30:29 AM EST
    about today. I think it is logical and probably smart for them to let it go and not come off possibly look defensive.

    Do I hope they have a deeper game plan (none / 0) (#56)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 09:39:31 AM EST
    to handle any of their issues?  It isn't going to be "let go" when you have Evangelicals backing Santorum.  It'll just go Super PAC commercials.

    That's why Santorum says he's (none / 0) (#57)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 09:41:06 AM EST
    laying off of him.  He is a kind decent Christian, he's even Reaganesque on this and the Super PACS aren't.

    What are you waiting for? (none / 0) (#60)
    by Yman on Fri Jan 20, 2012 at 10:41:05 AM EST
    The Republican candidates said SOPA "was bad" ... so did Obama.

    Of course, talk is cheap ... for both.

    close your eyes and listen (none / 0) (#71)
    by Jlvngstn on Sat Jan 21, 2012 at 11:17:56 AM EST
    to the way he says "ex-wife"  

    do you hear:

    A) Hatred
    B) Forgiveness
    C) B*tch betta have my money
    D) A & C