But, he's surged to No. 1 in GOP polling because he's supposed to be the last, best hope of wingnuts who want somebody orthodox and pure to take out the flip-flopping Mitt Romney. And, yes, that's what's driving this process.
Given that the tea party line on Fannie/Freddie is that "ebil Democrats made it sell a bunch of houses to poor, unworthy black folks," how can they digest him getting nearly $2M for helping spread that advice?
Fannie/Freddie insiders are already challenging his version of what that advice was. And, as for the claim he didn't do lobbying? The DC line between lobbying and "public policy advice" is often so thin as to depend on whether the "advice" was passed out at Capitol Hill or at the agency or think tank's HQ.
Since this isn't quite gay sex with Rush Limbaugh, and the next Mittster alternative for wingnuts is either Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, or a fuller embrace of Michele Bachmann, he may not totally tank.
More on the issues facing Newt here.
While Paul starts to rise. Nobody has ever accused him of sexual or financial lapses; he's just a nutbar. If any sort of Paul surge holds up, this could really be "fun."
And a New York Times article on how tea partiers' destructive influence on primaries is undercutting the GOP's chance of regaining control of the Senate applies perfectly to this year's presidential primaries.
Fears of ideologically divisive primaries often keep the best candidates from running, some Republican officials said.
“We are having trouble recruiting,” said Martha Breene, the chairwoman of the Venango County Republican party in Pennsylvania. “You often are not getting what you hope you could be getting, and then there is the Tea Party factor. A lot of them have good intent but it is sort of like they are the police men of all things and they aren’t going to let other Republicans matter.”Yep, sounds like the presidential primaries.
Which would give Romney a narrow plurality over a muddle of everybody else.