Now this is rich. As Real Clear Politics accurately described it, Newt Gingrich yesterday effectively labeled Mitt Romney a Rockefeller Republican — with the clear intent of subtly distancing Romney further from any conservative support. Of course, what Gingrich doesn’t want any of us to remember is that this is like the rock calling the stone a hard object. Gingrich himself quite literally was a Rockefeller Republican, having served as Rockefeller’s southern regional director in Rocky’s run for the White House in 1968 (while Gingrich was a grad student at Tulane University).
Every once in a while, Gingrich’s old, Rocky-like animus against conservatives rears its head, because when he disagrees with conservatives, he can’t stop at disagreeing, but, as if indulging a verbal tic, tends to not just disagree with insult us. He insulted conservatives repeatedly during internal wars in the House in 1997 and 1998. He insulted conservatives when explaining his decision to endorse Dede Scozzafava (the lib Republican) in that special election in New York. He insulted conservatives when explaining and re-explaining his statements trashing Paul Ryan’s budget this year. It’s just a habit of his. He can’t seem to help it. It’s visceral. In his heart of heart or mind of minds, he thinks we’re troglodytes.
But when it suits him, he hangs the Rocky label on his opponent Romney. What a clever, clever man!