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Return of the Revolutionary

Posted: January 28, 2012 at 4:44 am

From the moment that Newt Gingrich arrived in the
House of
Representatives
in 1979, he was overflowing with ideas.
Pudgy, prolix, and prematurely gray, Gingrich tossed off policy
proposals (government bonuses for poor children who learn to
read, tax credits to help lower-income families buy computers);
management theories (“There is a model I work off,” he told one
interviewer: “visions, strategies, projects, and tactics”);
legislative strategies (“It is my tactic to confront them so
hard they have to respond”); and projections of the future (“My
interest is in creating a positive, dynamic, high-tech,
self-governing, free-market future”) in a torrent of words that
suggested either a touch of genius or Tourette’s syndrome. He
sometimes resembled a human PowerPoint presentation. Gingrich’s
whirling activity and tireless proselytizing touched on almost
every conceivable subject of policy and political debate. But
at its root was a simple injunction: Republicans must sharpen
their differences with Democrats in every possible way and
create clear, bright lines of division between the parties.
“I’m tough in the House because when I arrived the Republican
Party was a soft institution that lacked the tradition of
fighting,” Gingrich said years after his arrival. “You had to
have somebody who was willing to fight.”

With that militant vision, Gingrich began an insurrection
against the viewpoint that had dominated the House GOP since
the 1950s. An Army brat and a former history professor at West
Georgia College, Gingrich came to in Washington as the sole
Republican
in Georgia’s congressional delegation. He was inspired by Barry
Goldwater and Ronald Reagan, but from the outset he
was never an ideological purist. His conservatism was leavened
by a generous (and often prescient) futurism that led him to
worry about such things as how technology might empower the
disabled for more productive lives. What truly set him apart
was his capacity to formulate a long-term plan for redefining
both parties, and his willingness to pursue almost any means
necessary to advance it. Even as a junior member, his ambition
was boundless. “I want to shift the entire planet,” he told
The Washington Post in 1985.

There’s a back-to-the-future air about Gingrich’s reemergence
as a top-tier Republican presidential contender nearly 14 years
after he resigned from the House (amid a backlash within his
own caucus after the GOP’s losses in the 1998 midterm
election). As a presidential candidate, Gingrich doesn’t look
much like the scattershot, deal-making speaker who, as Rick
Santorum likes to remind audiences, faced a rebellion in his
ranks just three years after leading them to their first House
majority in four decades. Instead, the Gingrich visible to
audiences today is more reminiscent of the guerrilla leader who
plotted the GOP’s long march back to power. He is running as
Mao the revolutionary in the caves, not Mao the helmsman in
Beijing.

As a junior member in what seemed a permanent minority,
Gingrich found that often he could be heard only by framing the
conservative case against Democrats in language that shattered
the era’s boundaries of politically acceptable speech. The
instincts that Gingrich honed, and the strategies he applied,
while shouting from the backbenches 30 years ago are at the
center of his success today. “I used to call him the great
framer: He could frame an issue more effectively than anybody I
know,” said Republican former Rep. Vin Weber, a close Gingrich
ally in those years who is supporting Mitt Romney in 2012. “He
did it for the House Republicans for 14 years. I can
see in this race [that] he doesn’t always get it right the
first time, but he gets there in framing the issue: the
Massachusetts moderate versus the Reagan conservative, a
manager versus someone who can change the government. That’s
what Romney has to worry about.”

In this contest, Gingrich has built his campaign largely around
his commanding performance in Republican presidential debates.
Partly, GOP voters have responded to his fluent in a wide array
of issues. But mostly, many observers agree, he has thrilled
the party’s most ideological elements with his lacerating
attacks against President Obama, Democrats, and the news media.

“Gingrich certainly is effective in capturing a tone and tenor
that really resonates with a great deal of Republicans out
there, and Mitt Romney just has a harder time doing it,” said
Steve Schmidt, campaign manager for John McCain in 2008.

“Tip made a critical error when he took on Newt, because he
elevated Newt.”—Former Rep. Tony Coelho, D-Calif.

A Gingrich jeremiad launches words like projectiles in rapid
fire; he is to the usual style of political invective what an
AK-47 is to a Colt 45. In his election-night victory speech in
South Carolina alone, Gingrich denounced Obama as “the most
effective food-stamp president in American history” and “a
danger to this country” who subscribes to “the radicalism of
Saul Alinsky” and wants to transform America into “a brand-new
secular Europe-style bureaucratic socialist system”; described
federal judges as “antireligious bigots”; and insisted that
“elites … have been trying for a half-century to force us to
quit being Americans and to become some kind of other system.”

As Romney and Santorum both point out, Gingrich’s ideological
compass has not always pointed due right. But his partisan
direction has been steadfast. Since he arrived in Washington,
he has functioned as an unwavering Republican warrior against
Democrats. For many of the voters drawn to Gingrich, his appeal
is the promise that he will deliver the GOP case in precisely
the unflinching language that many on the right yearn to
hear—that he will channel their deepest beliefs without
equivocation or dilution. (It is exactly that tendency that
causes many senior GOP strategists to fear that Gingrich would
repel less-ideological swing voters should he win the
nomination.)

With confrontation at its core, Gingrich’s presidential
campaign is a return to the playbook he followed during his
rise to power in Washington, when he perpetually collided with
Democrats and other Republicans in his insistence that the way
to reclaim power was always and unreservedly to fight. At 68,
Gingrich is offering the GOP the same martial path to revival
that he did during the insurgent years in the House that shaped
his approach to politics. “He faces an incredibly frustrated
and angry conservative base who wants to frame the issues in
stark, polarizing, emotive terms,” Weber said. “That’s what he
is good at. It’s a very serious question about whether that’s
how a Republican will win this election against President
Obama. But that’s what a lot of Republicans think they want.”

STIRRINGS

At the time of Gingrich’s arrival, the House GOP leadership
resembled a sleepy family-owned company ripe for a takeover.
Under the leadership of John J. Rhodes in the 1970s, and then
Bob Michel
after 1981, Republicans in the House had generally minimized
their confrontations with Democrats. Instead they worked
quietly to maximize their influence on the legislation that
Democrats advanced. Michel—a quintessentially self-effacing,
mid-century mid-American who had first been elected from his
Peoria, Ill., seat in 1956—believed that collaboration was a
more effective political strategy than confrontation because it
allowed the minority Republicans to share the credit for
Congress’s accomplishments. He was leery of ideas that veered
too sharply from the accepted political mainstream. Ed Feulner,
the longtime president of the Heritage Foundation, recalls
being invited to a breakfast with Michel and senior Republican
committee members during the Reagan years. Michel wanted to
know what Heritage was working on, and Feulner ran through the
list: tax reform, other domestic issues, Social Security. As
soon as those words left Feulner’s mouth, Michel reached over
and squeezed him on the arm. “Ed,” Michel said gravely, “we
don’t talk about changing Social Security in this building.”

Michel’s approach brought tangible benefits to Republicans—an
appropriation for a district here, a small change in
legislative language to benefit a local interest there. But
Gingrich and the allies who gathered around him considered the
Michel system a formula for permanent subjugation. To Gingrich,
Republicans were trading ease and intermittent influence for
real power. Democrats might provide small favors to
Republicans, but the majority still controlled all the big
policy decisions. Gingrich thought the GOP leadership accepted
that deal because it did not really believe it could overthrow
the Democrats. “If you think you are the subordinate wolf, you
spent a lot of time cultivating the dominant wolf,” Gingrich
said. “If you think you are capable of becoming the dominant
wolf, you spend a lot of your energy beating the dominant
wolf.”

After the invigorating breakthroughs of Reagan’s first six
months in the White House, Gingrich and his allies grew more
frustrated as the Republican revolution flagged through the
rest of 1981 and ’82. When Reagan agreed to raise taxes in
1982, the younger Republican members from the classes of 1978
and ’80 voted in large numbers against the deal. After
Democrats trounced the GOP in the 1982 midterm election, a
discouraged Gingrich traveled to New York to seek advice from
former President Nixon. Nixon told him that Congress was too
large for any single individual to change; if Gingrich wanted
to make a difference, he would need reinforcements. A few
months later, with a small group that included Weber of
Minnesota, Bob Walker of Pennsylvania, and Judd Gregg of New
Hampshire, three other shrewd Republican backbenchers, Gingrich
founded the Conservative Opportunity Society.

Gingrich became the personification of the COS, but it
functioned as a collaborative effort. Weber, Walker, Gregg, and
Connie Mack of Florida all played large roles. The change it
represented was not personal but generational. Michel, in every
respect, was a creature of the post-World War II age of
bargaining. The young conservatives who formed the Conservative
Opportunity Society plugged into the new currents that were
transforming that system. Far more than most of their
colleagues, the activists recognized that in the changing media
environment, congressional Republicans could define themselves
more through the messages they broadcast on television than the
commas they inserted into complex pieces of legislation. The
group’s goal, Gingrich recalled, was to fill “a vacuum in terms
of creating a confrontational activism that was
media-oriented.”

Gingrich never wavered in his Vietnam-like conviction that
saving the House required him first to destroy its credibility
with the public.

The COS activists also quickly built alliances with many of the
new conservative institutions that emerged in the 1970s;
Gingrich visited the fledgling Heritage Foundation’s modest C
Street office for a briefing over brown-bag lunches even before
his election. He considered the arrival of the groups
“enormously important. It was important because you needed the
intellectual resources, it was important because you needed the
noise, it was important because you needed the training for
younger activists who could become candidates.” He encouraged
Paul Weyrich, the visionary who helped found the Heritage
Foundation, to inaugurate a weekly Wednesday lunch with
conservative groups that Gingrich envisioned as the outside
equivalent to the inside maneuvering of the COS.

And then Gingrich looked for issues that would allow him to
activate the emerging grassroots networks. One of the first
opportunities came with the National Federation of Independent
Business, the passionately antigovernment small-business lobby.
“We had some fight under way, and I called the head of the
NFIB,” Gingrich recalled. “I said, ‘I want to start this
fight.’ This was 1979. He said, ‘It’s our issue; we’re totally
with you.’ I said, ‘What can you do for me within 48 hours?’ He
said, ‘I can send out 44,000 thousand telegrams’—they weren’t
e-mails back then—‘to my most active members.’ Well, it had
never occurred to John Rhodes [that] if he thought of the
network he could energize, rather than thinking about the
resources that he owned, the world was enormous.… I would look
for networks that had a parallel interest to us.”

The Conservative Opportunity Society sought to reshape the
political landscape through two strategies. Gingrich and his
allies promoted an ambitious agenda that embraced the
cutting-edge conservative thinking, which the GOP leadership
had kept at a distance. In its early manifestos, the COS
championed a marriage of economic (balanced budget, line-item
veto), social (welfare reform, school prayer), and
foreign-policy (missile defense) priorities that proposed to
push beyond Reagan on almost every front. They spent hours
debating principles, proposals, and priorities. Their ideas
presented the terms for a much more ideologically polarized
contrast with the majority Democrats.

But the group quickly learned that the policy wish lists of
junior members in the House’s minority party attracted little
attention. Instead, the COS made its mark primarily through its
other central focus: attacks on Democrats. The megaphone that
would make them heard from the backbenches was C-SPAN, the
cable service that began televising House proceedings in 1979.
Acting on Walker’s suggestion, the COS members regularly
gathered on the House floor to flay Democrats during late-night
speeches that found a small but enthusiastic audience through
C-SPAN. (Among the regular viewers was a young radio talk-show
host named Rush Limbaugh.) From the start, the group’s hallmark
was the use of flamboyant, inflammatory rhetoric. Gingrich used
adjectives like rocks. He described the House as a “sick
institution” and “Tammany Hall on Capitol Hill.” (Gingrich’s
election-night victory speech in South Carolina last Saturday,
with its armada of derogatory adjectives, would have fit easily
into any COS greatest-hits package.)

In COS circles, Gingrich’s rhetoric already stood out, Weber
recalled. “A lot of us were uncomfortable with Newt’s language
even back then,” he said. But Gingrich’s ferocity was carefully
calculated (if not always carefully calibrated). “He used
[vitriolic language] strategically and tactically,” Weber said.
“Newt never blurted anything out; it was always carefully
thought out, carefully weighed, and as he got more advanced in
leadership it was always focus-group tested.”

Gingrich scored his greatest early coup in 1984, when he used
one of his evening speeches to charge that Democrats opposing
aid to the Nicaraguan Contras had been “blind to communism.”
Gingrich’s attack provoked Speaker Tip O’Neill to lash back at
him on the House floor; O’Neill’s words violated House rules
against personal attacks. When the parliamentarian formally
rebuked O’Neill for his remarks, House Republicans, celebrating
a singular moment of triumph after nearly three decades of
uninterrupted Democratic control, rose to applaud Gingrich.
“Tip made a critical error when he took on Newt, because he
elevated Newt,” said Tony Coelho, the tough and savvy Democrat
who arrived on Capitol Hill as an aide in 1965 and then was
elected as a representative from California in 1978. “The rest
of the Republican caucus loved it, because they finally got
under his skin, and that’s what they were trying to do.”

Gingrich and his allies hurt Democrats the most through a
sustained campaign to portray the House as endemically corrupt.
Gingrich sought to expel a Democrat who had been convicted of
diverting office funds into his pocket and urged the censure
(rather than the milder reprimand) of a Democrat and a
Republican
who admitted to having sexual relationships with congressional
pages. He hit the jackpot when he promoted ethical allegations
against Jim Wright, O’Neill’s successor as House speaker,
centered on Wright’s lucrative contract for a privately
published book. Michel kept his distance, but Gingrich pressed
on, eventually filing a formal complaint with the House Ethics
Committee. A long, tangled confrontation led to Wright’s
resignation in 1989, after an angry final blast at “mindless
cannibalism” consuming the Capitol. (Ironically, Gingrich used
similar language more than a decade later to describe the young
House conservatives who helped remove him as speaker after the
GOP’s unexpected losses in 1998.) A separate ethics dispute
forced Coelho, who had ascended to the No. 3 position in the
Democratic leadership, majority whip, to step down around the
same time, too. Even those twin departures didn’t stop the
crusade. Gingrich encouraged younger Republicans, who hammered
away at irregularities in the operations of the House Post
Office and House bank. “We’d sit down and chat, and I’d say,
you know, ‘Be bold. Have courage. When in doubt, take risk,’ ”
Gingrich recalled in an interview a few years later. (It was
this long record that Gingrich understandably had in mind
during a recent South Carolina debate when he derided Rick
Santorum’s suggestion that he had been timid on ethics issues
in Congress.)

All of these offensives threatened Republicans as well as
Democrats and created an atmosphere of tension so thick that
the fights among members sometimes extended beyond words to
fists. But Gingrich never wavered in his Vietnam-like
conviction that saving the House required him first to destroy
its credibility with the public. Soon after Gingrich’s long
campaign resulted in his election as speaker in 1995, he was
asked in one interview how much damage he had been willing to
inflict on the House to pry it from Democratic control:

“You had to bring it down … to start over?”

“Yes, I always thought that.”

A REVOLT IS BORN

Gingrich and his allies focused most of their firepower on
Democrats, but they also targeted Republicans who resisted
their vision of a party committed to contrast and conflict.
After Sen. Bob Dole drove through the 1982 tax increase,
Gingrich famously derided him as the “tax collector for the
welfare state.” Even Reagan wasn’t immune. Whenever the
president compromised with Democrats or sounded unifying
themes, Gingrich and his allies complained. “It totally blurred
all the issues between the parties,” Gingrich grumbled after
Reagan signed the Dole-designed bill raising taxes. “We want to
delineate for the country what the real choices are.” In 1984,
Gingrich condemned Reagan’s gauzy “Morning Again in America”
campaign message: “Reagan should have prepared for [a second
term] … by forcing a polarization of the country,” Gingrich
told a seminar at the Heritage Foundation. “He should have been
running against liberals and radicals.” The next year, House
conservatives joined in an insurrection that led Reagan to
renounce a bipartisan agreement that Dole had assembled in the
Senate to reduce the budget deficit through difficult budget
cuts, including reductions in Social Security benefits.

Most House Republicans initially kept their distance from
Gingrich’s uncompromising approach. Though Michel tried to
avoid open warfare, his unease with Gingrich’s strategy often
slipped out. (When many House Republicans applauded Gingrich
after his confrontation with O’Neill, Michel walked out of the
chamber without clapping.) “While Michel wanted to be speaker,”
Coelho said, “he didn’t want to hurt the establishment. And
Newt understood [that] the only way to get there was to go
after the establishment.”

Through the Reagan years, the balance inside the GOP Conference
tipped toward Gingrich. Democrats, ironically, deserved much of
the credit for his success. The changes in House rules that
Democrats had engineered in the 1970s eroded the rationale for
Michel’s cooperative strategy. The greatest opportunity for
House Republicans to influence legislation had come in the
committees, where senior members could build close
relationships with their Democratic counterparts. But when
Democratic reformers in the 1970s ended the use of seniority to
pick committee chairs, those opportunities for quiet
accommodation diminished because the Democratic chairmen felt
more pressure to follow the wishes of their overall caucus.
Under the new rules, not only junior but also senior
Republicans accustomed to a measure of influence found
themselves excluded.

The liberal reformers’ fundamental goal in changing the House
rules had been to provide the majority in the Democratic Caucus
more leverage to impose its will without resistance from either
conservative Democrats or frustrated Republicans. But each step
that Democrats took toward fulfilling that vision rallied more
Republicans to Gingrich’s banner. Even many Republicans who
preferred to work with Democrats concluded that they could be
heard only by confronting them. In the House, a more militant
and unified Republican Party was the inevitable, if often
unanticipated, consequence of a more unified Democratic Party.

The cycle of action and reaction, like a gang war, spiraled
toward ever higher levels of conflict. Rank-and-file Democrats
pressured their leaders for a tougher response to Gingrich’s
escalating challenge. “Our caucus started to get more and more
aggressive against our leadership, because our leadership was
collegial and [was] permitting Newt and crowd to kick the shit
out of us,” Coelho said. “And when [we] started pushing back …
the caucus wanted to keep pushing.”

A critical moment came in 1985, when Democrats overrode
Republican objections to award an Indiana seat to Democrat
Frank McCloskey after a close and disputed race; the decision
so infuriated House Republicans that they marched out of the
chamber in protest. (That night, Gingrich said, there was a
surge “in the number of members … who were Gingrichites.”) The
confrontations grew even angrier after the brusque Wright
succeeded O’Neill in 1987. Wright shared none of Gingrich’s
ideology but matched his any-means-necessary ethos. Wright’s
goal, in fact, was the same as Gingrich’s: to advance an agenda
that sharpened the differences between the parties. Far more
than O’Neill, Wright used the leverage granted him by the
previous decade’s rules changes to tighten the screws on
Republicans and dissenting Democrats. Wright threatened
Democrats who resisted his proposals with loss of their
chairmanships or seats on the prestigious committees. He
pressured the Rules Committee to send more bills to the floor
under restrictions that denied Republicans opportunities to be
heard. Republicans complained that Democrats excluded them from
committee deliberations on drafting key bills, such as the
budget or tax legislation. Wright infuriated Republicans by
bringing more legislation directly to the House floor,
bypassing the committees altogether. Wright’s provocations
drove more House Republicans away from Michel’s congenial
approach and toward Gingrich.

Generational change also bolstered Gingrich. Each succeeding
election brought in Republicans inspired by Goldwater and then
Reagan, reducing the influence of Michel’s generation. The
advance guard for change arrived in the 1976 election, which
brought to the House 20 new Republican members, including
Walker, David Stockman, and Dan Quayle. In 1978, the GOP added
36 new faces, including Gingrich, Dick Cheney, and Jim
Sensenbrenner. Another 52 new House Republicans swept in with
the 1980 Reagan landslide, including Weber and Gregg. In 1982,
Dan Burton and Mack came in with 22 others; two years after
that, the 31 freshman Republicans elected amid Reagan’s second
landslide included two Texans named Tom DeLay and Dick Armey,
who would help lead the Republican resurgence a decade later.

Michel still held the reins, but the party was being remade
around him. “We out-recruited the other side slowly and
steadily,” Gingrich said. The tipping point inside the
Republican caucus came in 1989, when Gingrich won election as
whip. He narrowly defeated Michel’s choice, Ed Madigan, a
colorless but shrewd insider known as a skilled legislative
tactician. The outcome didn’t divide exactly along ideological
lines. While some conservatives sided with Madigan (the young
DeLay for one), several leading moderates backed Gingrich. And
Gingrich ran more on a platform of injecting vitality into the
leadership than of lurching it to the right. But Gingrich’s
victory still represented a landmark. Madigan’s calling card
was his ability to find the places where the two parties could
agree; Gingrich was a provocateur skilled at highlighting the
places where the two parties disagreed. His victory provided
the first institutional foothold for the viewpoint that
Republicans could prosper more by fighting than by negotiating
with Democrats.

THE PARTISAN APOTHEOSIS

The patrician, courteous, and cautious George H.W. Bush offered
the Democrats who controlled the House and Senate throughout
his presidency the same implicit trade-off as Dwight Eisenhower
and Nixon had. Like them, Bush seemed willing to give ground to
Democrats on domestic issues to buy freedom to maneuver abroad.
With his promise of a “kinder and gentler” America, he signaled
that he intended to set a less confrontational tone than Reagan
had. That modest instinct produced compromises between Bush and
congressional Democrats on many fronts: an extension of the
Clean Air Act; the Americans with Disabilities Act;
far-reaching immigration legislation; a civil-rights bill; and,
above all, the deal he accepted in 1990 to begin reducing the
massive budget deficits of the Reagan era through a combination
of spending restraints and tax increases.

Many Americans, accurately, saw the Bush administration as
listless and indifferent. As the economy slowed, the demand for
a more activist, energetic strategy grew. Democrats exploited
those reservations with an occasionally confrontational
approach designed to sharpen the differences between the two
sides.

But more important, antagonism toward Bush’s approach grew
among conservative congressional Republicans. The president
frustrated Gingrich’s acolytes by presenting so few positive
alternatives to Democratic proposals for new government
programs, and he infuriated them—and the outside activists they
aligned with—by cutting deals with Democrats. From
small-business owners in the NFIB, to gun owners in the
National Rifle Association, to antitax and antiregulatory
activists, Bush alienated almost every element of the
grassroots Republican coalition that had emerged since the
1970s.

The discontent culminated in a full-scale revolt over the
budget deal in 1990. When Bush agreed to raise taxes as part of
the package—breaking his “no new taxes” pledge—Gingrich led a
rebellion among House Republicans. Eventually almost half of
them voted against the deal. The objection from Gingrich and
his allies was not only ideological but tactical. They rejected
the idea of a solution that bridged the differences between the
parties. The explicit goal of the conservative House
Republicans was to make such accommodations unacceptably
painful. “The No. 1 thing we had to prove in the fall of ’90,”
Gingrich said later, “was that, if you explicitly decided to
govern from the center, we could make it so unbelievably
expensive you couldn’t sustain it.”

This was more than a single policy dispute. It was a signal of
a more fundamental shift. The revolt against Bush’s budget
marked a triumph for the campaign against bipartisan
cooperation that the COS had waged through the 1980s. One
prosaic measure of success was that, when Bill Clinton proposed
to raise taxes in 1993, every Republican in the House and
Senate opposed him. But the conservatives’ real success was
much broader. After Clinton defeated Bush in 1992, they
trumpeted the loss as proof that it was self-defeating for
Republicans to pursue bipartisan agreements like the budget
deal that could divide or demoralize the party’s ideological
base.

Two years after Bush’s defeat, Gingrich led Republicans back to
their first House majority in 40 years. The victory was the
culmination of his long campaign, a triumph for his effort to
transform the House GOP into a militant, polarizing opposition
party. “It was a remarkably disciplined vision, and it worked,”
Weber said.

Initially, Gingrich emerged as a speaker so powerful that he
seemed a prime minister to Bill Clinton’s nearly symbolic head
of state, particularly as Gingrich drove his Contract With
America through the House. But after Clinton outmaneuvered
Gingrich during the budget shutdowns of 1995 and ’96, the
speaker never entirely regained his troops’ confidence. As a
COS guerrilla, he had brilliantly framed choices that fractured
his opponents’ political coalition and enlarged his own; as the
speaker, he struggled to find the right mix of confrontation
and conciliation to deal with an adversary as protean as
Clinton. “We had been in the minority for 40 years, and if we
hadn’t polarized [the debate] over the institution, we might
still be there,” Weber said. “But that’s not necessarily
helpful for governing, and to the extent he was successful as
speaker, as much credit goes to Clinton as to Newt.”

After only four years in power, Gingrich resigned amid a
rebellion by his own members after his drive to impeach Clinton
led to unexpected GOP losses in the 1998 election. That
humiliating fall seemed to define Gingrich’s legacy, stamping
him as proof of the truism that all revolutions devour their
own children. But he has staged a remarkable political
resurrection by drawing on the skills that made him such an
effective insurgent three decades ago. Just as Gingrich was a
better guerrilla than he was a speaker—Mao in the caves, rather
than Mao in Beijing—his brilliance at polarizing debate might
serve him better as a primary candidate than as a
general-election nominee, much less as a president. Still, in
his propulsive resurgence, Gingrich is reminding a new
generation of friends and foes that he remains among the most
skilled, and divisive, political insurgents of our time.

_________________________________

Adopted from The Second Civil War: How Extreme Partisanship
Has Paralyzed Washington and Polarized America
(Penguin,
2007)

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Return of the Revolutionary

Recommendation and review posted by G. Smith

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Living With Alzheimer's Disease – Video

Posted: January 27, 2012 at 2:18 pm

27-10-2006 00:42 The story of living with the horrible disease, how it affects the afflicted and their loved ones. Stem Cell research is the most promising research in terms of potential cures for this and many other currently incurable diseases.

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Living With Alzheimer's Disease - Video

Recommendation and review posted by Fredricko


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