The world’s been on pins and needles waiting to hear if the latest in a long line of Republican savior-wannabes is going to run in 2012.
FOX News apparently wondered too. They had an embarrassing situation – four potential presidential candidates drawing paychecks from Rupert Murdoch. On Wednesday they suspended Newt’s contract (along with that of Rick Santorum) because both men are contemplating a run at president. Bret Baier, FOX News’ political anchor, announced the decision:
“The suspension is effective for 60 days. Then on May 1, their contracts will be terminated unless they notify Fox that they are not running for president.”
He added, “This had been contemplated from the start, from the very beginning, but that is effective today.”
Newt apparently already knew what he wanted to do. He’s going to be that savior. The Great White (Rich) Hope. He told radio host Martha Zoller in an interview on Thursday that,
“Callista and I are prepared to see if there are enough folks who want to see if we can get this country back on the right track.”
He even has a website: NewtExplore2012.com. It went online today. Feel free to visit.
Of course, “the right track” is an iffy concept: he already doesn’t have Bryan Fischer. The Bigoted One announced that Newt isn’t “that guy”:
“[I]t is imperative that the next standard bearer of the conservative movement be a man who has demonstrated a lifelong commitment to family values in deed as well as in words, a man who does not just talk the talk but has walked the walk.”
Apparently, Newt and Bryan have different visions for America. Bryan’s involves exterminating Native Americans but staying out of pants that don’t belong to you. But this is no place to delve into dark funamentalist fantasies. We are dealing with Newt here…oh wait, maybe we are dealing with dark fundamentalist fantasies.
In a “Note from Newt & Callista” posted on the site’s home page there is an explanatory message from the would-be savior:
America’s greatness lies in ‘We the People.’
We are a nation like no other. To remain so will require the dedicated participation of every citizen, of every neighborhood, of every background. This is the responsibility of a free people.
We are excited about exploring whether there is sufficient support for my potential candidacy for President of this exceptional country.
We have to assume, however, that since Newt hasn’t come out in favor of the unions and the middle class that “we the people” doesn’t include anyone but rich white men – coincidentally, men like Newt. In this new America it will help to be Christian, and of course to not have brown skin, to be a woman, an immigrant, a secularist, an atheist (or a Heathen like me), or a member of America’s middle class, or somebody who wants healthcare so they don’t die…
So Newt is going to explore his “candidacy” and maybe find himself in ways Bryan Fischer finds inappropriate (he’s done it before, after all).
FOX News said it had not suspended Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee’s contracts because neither of them has shown any movement towards actually running – exploratory committees and the like – and Dianne Brandi, a legal executive at Fox, told The Los Angeles Times that Huckabee only seems interested in selling books right now.
And of course, who knows what Sarah Palin is interested in besides Sarah Palin. Grifterella will no doubt look out for number one.
In any event, none of these hopefuls can wait long to decide once Newt has spoken. As Michael Shear wrote yesterday for The Caucus blog in the New York Times, “an official acknowledgment by Mr. Gingrich that he is running for president could jump-start a race that has been simmering below the surface for months.”
As for Newt, as of last night, about 9 pm eastern time, about 1300 people had “liked” Newt’s new site. As of about 7 am this morning, the number was at 1600 give or take. Not overwhelming support for a man as well-known as Newt. I suppose time will tell if he will be drawing a FOX paycheck in sixty days and a few screen captures will be all that remains of his 2012 hopes.