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Tim Wilson: Republicans - almost as p#$%@* as Newt

opinion Tim Wilson

By Tim Wilson

Published: 1:39PM Thursday November 24, 2011 Source: ONE News

So Republicans have now decided that they prefer Newt Gingrich, a man who famously dumped a wife when she had cancer, to Mitt Romney, a man who's quietly and cheerfully remained married to the same woman all his adult life. Really?

After many twists and turns; after weird Michelle Bachman, after forgetful Rick Perry and pervy (allegedly) Herman Cain, the race for the Republican nomination has become the battle of the droll names: Newt vs Mitt.

The struggle is not just between callousness and devotion. Newt took $1.6 million from disgraced mortgage company Freddie Mac as a 'historian'.

Mitt made bank working for Bain Capital, an investment company that bought companies, made them more efficient (by sacking people), and reselling them.

Newt looks permanently dyspeptic, like he swallowed a fly at lunch.

Mitt had to go to charm school this summer to learn how to act like a human being.

Neither candidate has what you could call the common touch.

Fine; why would anyone want that? Only, politics is a giant beauty contest, so let's look at the people who are holding the contest, the Republican Party.

In the past few months it's fallen in and out of love more times than a man having a mid-life crisis. Its entertained unserious candidates like Herman Cain, just to be, well, entertained.

Okay, I know that this is the comedy section of the Presidential election.

We're still in the silly season, and the only people who are motivated to consider these candidates are those whom the press refers to as 'the party faithful', and what you or I would call 'right wing nut jobs'.

Actually, the press loves these guys.

They're like the girlfriend who never calls, then rocks up at 2am and smashes all your windows out. They're fun.

Who wouldn't love following Herman Cain around? "Herman's fun!" a journalist covering the campaign told me, "he's more fun than Romney."

Reporting on Mitt Romney is like reading Somerset Maughan's Of Human Bondage; you feel as if you've been shackled to a corpse. I know, I've done two out of the three. Zzzzzzz.

It's been suggested that this battalion of loons represents the Fox-News-ification of the Republican Party.

Once the Republican Party was reported on by Fox News, now it's turned into Fox News, full of attention grabbing headlines, of weird non-sequiturs that are dog-whistles, of plain talk that is really pandering to a base.

And while Fox News is popular, the biggest cable news network in the US, these populist candidates aren't beloved.

The front runner for Republicans against Obama a month ago in polls, in a dead heat, was& dreary old Mitt Romney.

So why do Republicans, who pride themselves as realists, seem to be preoccupied with magical thinking?

Remember at one point Donald Trump was spoken of as a candidate. Donald Trump?!

I don't know what's going on, whether this strange imbalance is a sign of the party's health, in digesting these sour political morsels, before settling on Mitt, or whether it indicates a shallowness of the talent poor.

Yes, Newt Gingrich has had more reincarnations that Lazarus.

Boosters praise this; it's a sign of stamina. What it also means is that he has had more deaths, also.

The bye-bye-wife-with-cancer-thing. The campaign-fell-apart-earlier-this-year-when-his-whole-Iowa-staff-quit-thing. The Freddie-Mac-thing.

Enjoy Newt. Enjoy the quirky name, the sound bites, and the snowy hair.

Enjoy the faint, salty sweet tang of scandal and entitlement that he emits.

Enjoy the good times. Savour Newt while he lasts, because he won't.