Perfectly Timed Political Hit

Let me start by saying I am speculating, but anybody who assumes the left is behind this character assassination is smoking dope.  If you think this was instigated for any reason except to combat the story that I reported earlier, you’re mistaken.  There will be no linkage back to the real culprits, of course, just like in the Herman Cain case, but you had better know the real reason:  Newt was beginning  to pull even with Mitt Romney.  If you haven’t noticed the convenient timing of these stories throughout the campaign year, I have news for you: You’re being led by the nose, and on the day that a story comes out about Romney’s offshore investments, what you’re actually seeing is a well-coordinated smear.  If you don’t understand, I’d like to explain.

The story about Romney is a set-up, and by the time they’re done “investigating,” it will be shown that Mitt Romney had done nothing illegal, which we could already guess. This is to give ABC News plausible deniability for being in bed with Mitt Romney.  In this manner, it looks as though Romney is just the lesser victim of this ABC News’ “diligent investigation,” but it’s much worse than that.

The story that Drudge is now pushing is a sham.  The very idea that ABC News wouldn’t run with this story in order to wreck Gingrich prior to South Carolina out of ethical concerns is a laughable hoax. ABC News has no journalistic ethics of which to speak, but in any case, we’re taking this no better than third-hand from a master head-line delivery artist named Matt Drudge.

How do I know the Newt story is a set-up?  I don’t, but let me explain why I think so:

If this was real, and if Marianne Gingrich had something shocking and new to disclose, the story would be running right now.  On the other hand, if the story is garbage, and what the former Mrs. Gingrich said was really not news, you would release the fact that you had the “dirt,” and you would withhold it while letting it “leak” that it was explosive and damaging.

For all we know right this moment, this is no more than the laments and disclosures of a jilted spouse.  I don’t mean to minimize the pain of divorce and all the things that lead to it, but if ABC News can dismiss Linda Tripp as a disgruntled former employee, it’s reasonable to suspect they could likewise dismiss Marianne Gingrich as a “disgruntled former wife.”  The only reason not to do so is that she has something so thoroughly damaging to tell that it would wreck Gingrich.  It could be anything from pillow-talk about political adversaries, or even friends, to something of a personal nature, but it could also be the complaints of an ex-spouse.  (Again, to ex-spouses, I am not dismissing your feelings, but let’s try to be objective about this, and admit that ex-spouses frequently aren’t.)

So why withhold it?  Because the speculation will be more damaging to Newt in the South Carolina primary if it’s a big unknown than if it were something less than catastrophic.  It is for this reason that if I were Newt Gingrich, I would insist that ABC make the footage public out of a “sense of ethics” for the candidates because an unknown looming negative is always worse in the imagination of voters than the facts of the allegation, short of murder or other gross illegality. If I were Newt, I would demand it, and I would demand it now.

I also suspect this will be used in an attempt to damage anybody who has endorsed Gingrich. After all, the argument will be, if they would throw their votes behind Gingrich or vote for him, how can they be trusted? Expect the media to immediately begin making the rounds of all those who have endorsed or in any way supported Newt Gingrich for comment, hoping to show them on camera or play the audio of them backing away from Gingrich.

I don’t think the former Speaker of the House reads this wee column, but if he does, the thing I would suggest to him is to demand it be released to clear the air before the election, particularly if he suspects that this is a trumped-up hit-job.  Speaker Gingrich, you should call ABC and Drudge’s bluff: Insist they put it out now, rather than damaging you by delay.  The damage being done to your reputation by this impeccably-timed leak is greater than the story is likely to do, because it will almost certainly come down to a he-said-she-said between former spouses.  Of course, it’s your campaign, and your life, but that’s my thinking.

Update: As I prepare to take this to press, Breitbart is reporting that ABC now “intends” to release the story on Friday night, the literal eve of the election.  It is either damaging or nothing, but it is the anticipation of the story that will do the most damage.  I still believe that Newt must call ABC’s bluff, because at present, he has nothing to which he can respond, and Friday, it will deprive him of time.  For this reason, I suspect the story is garbage, and when it’s disclosed, it will likely be nothing, but the whole thing is cooked and really, with the damage this will do hanging over his head, Newt would be better to demand it be released.  Even ABC couldn’t sell the “ethics” angle for withholding it, so it will go to press at the last possible moment when Newt won’t have time to refute it or anything of the sort, while the anticipation of the story is permitted to build right up to the eve of the election.  This is scandalous “journalism.”

 

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