The American presidential race is off with a bang, and this fact is none the less dramatized within the Republican Party. One of this party’s presidential hopefuls, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, has made his presidential bid even more ‘interesting’ by his recent disclosures that he had an extra-marital affair during the period prior to impeachment proceedings against former U.S. President Bill Clinton. The revelation by Mr. Gingrich shouldn’t be startling to anyone who is familiar with the former Georgia Congressman, who made a similar disclosure during the investigations against President Clinton. Gingrich, who as the 59th House Speaker held one of the most powerful political positions in America, eventually resigned this position, as well as his seat in the House of Representatives. The incident also cost him his marriage as well.
Following his resignations, Gingrich disappeared temporarily from public life but later resurfaced as a guest commentator for news media programs, such as Fox News. With a number of Republican and Democratic ‘wannabe’ hopefuls already throwing their hats into the political arena, including former New York mayor Rudolph (Rudy) Giuliani, many people are wondering why Gingrich has suddenly decided to bring his questionable past to the fore front once again. By declaring that he has asked for God’s forgiveness for his extra marital activities, Gingrich appears to be trying to vindicate himself by comparing his affair to that of former president Bill Clinton by saying that Clinton’s crimes were much greater due to the former President’s attempt to cover up his relationship with a junior White House aid, as well as other crimes, including contempt of Congress.
Gingrich’s desire to run for the American Presidency lumps him together with other Republican hopefuls, with Rudy Giuliani being considered the apparent front runner. Giuliani himself has had a very “colorful” personal life, including being married twice and having a number of extra marital affairs. Perhaps Mr. Gingrich feels that by “letting it all hang out” he can put this sordid business out of the way and then proceed to clean up his political act. Most Americans, however, are not so keen on accepting his attempts to turn over a new personal and political leaf. It is still very early in the campaign, and there are surely many more capable candidates out there with much cleaner personal and political ‘laundry’ to display.
Gingrich’s appearances on several American talk shows, as well as being a guest commentator on Fox News, indicate that he might become an acceptable journalist or talk show host; and this may be his best ‘calling’ in respect to his personal future. He could wind up being a permanent member of the Fox News staff; or even the host of a program such as The Tonight Show, presently hosted by TV personality Jay Leno. After all, Gingrich has plenty of material to use in the program’s beginning monolog.
At the end of the day, Mr. Gingrich’s political antics may remind many of words immortalized by American circus promoter P.T. Barnum, who said that “you can fool some people some of the time, but not everyone all of the time”.