I was wondering how Newt Gingrich would react to the crazy teabaggers that attacked him for endorsing Scozzafava: Would he stand by his principles or would he bow down at the altar of Rush Limbaugh?
Here's what what said in his endorsement of Dede Scozzafava:
“The special election for the 23rd Congressional District is an important test leading up to the mid-term 2010 elections,” Gingrich said of Scozzafava's candidacy in a statement to supporters, as reported by the The Post-Standard. “Our best chance to put responsible and principled leaders in Washington starts here, with Dede Scozzafava.”
“The Republican Revolution in 1994 started very much like what we see today,” the former speaker said. “Like then, our country is reeling from misguided liberal policies, high taxes and out-of-control spending. This special election in New York’s 23rd Congressional District could be the first election of the new Republican Revolution, but we need the momentum to get it started.”
The NRCC said this:
But Gingrich, who served as Speaker of the House from 1995 to 1999, wants to unite the party. He sees Scozzafava and the Upstate special election – the only House race in the nation this fall -- as the best hope for Republicans to start a comeback and regain control of Congress.
Gingrich is apparently willing to overlook Scozzafava’s support for same-sex marriage and abortion rights.
The teabaggers, Palin, Limbaugh and Beck were all putting their energy behind a man who wasn't even from the district, Doug Hoffman, and in the end it cost the GOP a seat in a district that hasn't elected a Democratic politician to represent them in over 100 years.
Right before the election, right-wing bloggers attacked Newt for supporting Dede and said they would never support him for President because of it. After Hoffman lost, Rush Limbaugh blamed Newt and the GOP party machine for Hoffman's loss.
What would Newt Gingrich do? Would he stand up for his endorsement and tell the teabagger brigade that to win national elections, the party needs moderates to be included? After all, he's the Big Kahuna. Guess again. In his election night wrapup that he tweeted the day after the election, he repeated Rudy Giuliani's line that Scozzafavva was too liberal to have been the Republican nominee, which is a blatant lie.
In retrospect it is clear Dede Scozzafava should never have been nominated because she was far too liberal to be acceptable.
Republican leaders in New York must recognize that Mike Long and the Conservative Party in that state have to be consulted before decisions are made. The national conservative movement is a force that has to be recognized and respected.
I certainly heard from enough friends to know that my decision to support the unanimous vote of the 11 New York county chairs was very unpopular with conservative activists.
In New York, after two failed special elections, it is clear the state party has to fight to change the election law so there are primaries in special elections. The insider nominating process is simply unacceptable to grassroots populists and guarantees a sense of illegitimacy.
Then, on Sean Hannity's Fox News show last night, he explained in detail why he regretted having supported Scozzafava. It was pretty abject.
Gingrich: I think the nomination was a mistake. I wish that we had gotten involved earlier. And if we had, I would have done everything I could to make sure she had not been picked. And she clearly proved in the last few days that she was in no way a loyal Republican.
Gingrich isn't one to make a snap judgment without knowing the facts, and he knew Dede was moderate on social issues, but to say she's not conservative enough is ridiculous.
If Republicans try to laugh off the notion that Limbaugh is running their party, all the media have to do is look at Newt. He caved to Limbaugh big time.