Published May 18, 2011
It is often said about Newt Gingrich that he is his own worst enemy. True, but making a fool of himself is only part of the damage he did with his latest outburst. The human wrecking ball damaged hopes for real fixes to the Medicare disaster.
The former House speaker rolled out his presidential quest in odd fashion -- by accusing fellow Republicans of "right-wing social engineering" and having a "radical" plan to change Medicare. After adding his support for the individual mandate at the heart of ObamaCare, he quickly tried to backtrack.
Too late. Opportunistic Dems seized on his attack to blast individual Republicans as headlines talked about a "rift" in the GOP ranks. In effect, Gingrich gave Dems their newest talking point and another excuse to block entitlement reform.
That would be fine if he actually had a plan or conviction of his own. He doesn't. Gingrich is so starved for attention and smitten with the sound of his own voice that he merely talks as long as anybody will listen.
Hopefully, he will soon have reason to stop.