If you look at last night’s debate as a game show, Newt Gingrich won the grand prize display package right at the beginning of the show. Newt really unloaded. And when Newt Gingrich unloads, we’re talking a very big load. John King started off by asking Newt about his ex-wife’s claims that he had asked her for an open marriage. King didn’t attack Newt, he teed him up! Newt launched into a tirade about how the media make “it harder to govern this country.” Exactly! I bet there are thrice-married family values hypocrites out there who won’t even run because they’re afraid of what the media would do to them. Newt thundered “I am appalled that you would begin a presidential debate on a topic like that.” Yes, appalled! Appalled, and eternally grateful! Come on, John King! You don’t think that Newt was waiting for that one like a cat under the bird feeder? The bottom line is that you know that Newt would be totally prepared for an infidelity question, just like you know that Mitt Romney would be completely prepared to deal with any income tax question. Oh... OK, bad example.
Mitt Romney always seems to be caught totally unprepared by these questions about his taxes. Odd, considering how incredibly well-prepared I’m sure he always is to DO his taxes. When Romney was asked about his taxes, he said that people were criticizing him for “being successful.” Not exactly, Mitt—they’re criticizing you for being successful at avoiding taxes. John King beautifully used Mitt’s father George Romney’s release of 12 years of his tax returns as an example. If King stepped in it at the beginning with Newt Gingrich, he later wiped his shoes on Mitt Romney. When asked if he would release multiple years of taxes like his father did, Mitt awkwardly blurted out “Maybe.” Mitt, “maybe” isn’t a definitive answer any more than the vote count from the Iowa caucus is a definitive result.
Romney attacked Newt for always talking about all the things he supposedly did with Ronald Reagan. It’s true. To listen to Newt, he and Ronald Reagan sound more like Starsky & Hutch. You know that Newt Gingrich wasn’t that close to Ronald Reagan. If he was that intimate with Reagan, he would have cheated on him. Heck, Newt would have asked Reagan if he could see other Republican icons. “I want an open mentoring relationship. Jack Kemp doesn’t care what I do, neither should you.”
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