Newt Wanted To Be Transformational Figure, Ends Up Laughingstock

From “Newt puts political legacy at risk,” Jonathan Marin and Alexander Burns, Politico:

“‘A lot of us who were around him before and didn’t think this was a good idea from the beginning were worried this was the way it was going to end,’ said Rich Galen, a top Gingrich aide in the 1990s.  ‘He’s in danger I think of becoming a laughingstock.’

“It didn’t have to end this way.  Gingrich could have withdraw graciously after twice proving his resilience and relevance in a race where few gave him much of a chance at being a contender, let alone winning the nomination.  But those who know Newton LeRoy Gingrich will say that to think he’d retreat quietly to McLean as a lion in winter, is to fundamentally misunderstand the man.  The same forces that propelled him to attempt a comeback at this late moment in his career is [sic] what keeps him in a race he almost certainly can’t win.

“Now though, with $1.5 million in debt, no realistic hope for winning another state, a downsized press corps following him and no debates left to grab attention, his attempt to remain in the race until Tampa seems more delusional than determined to some of his old associates.

“Galen predicted there’s going to be an ever-growing cost — both financially and to the former speaker’s reputation — to pressing on in a ‘reality distortion field.’

“‘I don’t understand the concept of continuing to pretend you’re in a campaign when you can’t travel,’ Galen said.  ‘At some point, even Fox will stop having him on for interviews.  Every day that he continues this it’s going to cost him weeks or months of repair down the road.'”

Lion in winter?  More like jackass in winter.  I especially like that “even Fox” reference.