There are a lot of fine candidates running for President who are not Mitt Romney. You can certainly say fantastic things about Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Michele Bachmann and some of the other candidates who are reaching for that brass ring. Like everyone running, Newt Gingrich has his flaws, but given the state of the race, it's time to start giving Newt serious consideration.
1) Newt Gingrich would run a competent campaign: Let me say publicly what I keep hearing privately from other conservatives. They tell me that they really don't want to vote for Mitt Romney, but Herman Cain seems to be raw and Rick Perry's debate performances so far haven't impressed them. So although they don't want Mitt Romney as the nominee, they're afraid that he may be the only candidate who can run a strong, professional campaign against Obama.
Maybe that's fair; maybe it's not, but it is what a lot of conservatives are saying behind the scenes. Without addressing those fears one way or the other, let me just note that there's no question that Newt Gingrich can run an effective race against Obama. After starting with minimal money and mass staff defections, Newt has made a pitch perfect drive towards the GOP nomination. He's had a strong message, he's shown charisma, been likable, positive -- and he's a much, much better debater than anyone else on the stage. Newt would actually end up being more electable than Romney because although both of them would run disciplined, well organized campaigns, Newt could actually excite conservatives while Mitt's support would be based on the fact that he is the "lesser of two evils."
2) Newt Gingrich is a conservative icon: Newt's image has taken a beating over the last few years because he did an anti-global warming commercial with Nancy Pelosi and backed squishy Republican Dede Scozzafava over the Conservative Party's Doug Hoffman out of party loyalty.
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