Gingrich Calls for End of Negative Campaigning
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich called the “Hillary 1984” YouTube attack ad “very interesting” but “utterly, totally, destructive of the process of thought. There is not a single thing in that ad that commercial that enables America to solve a problem.” He thinks it is part of a “very dangerous” trend.
He challenges candidates to agree that, if they are the nominee of their party, to agree to a 90 minute, unmoderated, Lincoln-Douglas style debate every week between Labor Day and the election.
It’s interesting but, obviously, not going to happen. And, like most ideas put forward by intellectuals, one that would benefit people like him greatly if adopted (and he were, somehow, to get the nomination).
UPDATE: Kevin Drum contends that “Newt Gingrich practically invented the modern attack-dog style of American politics.” There’s something to that, to be sure. On the other hand, he has always been an idea guy who has put forth a vision (often, a pie-in-the-sky, ridiculously unachievable one, to be sure) for solving the country’s problems. More than most politicians, too, he’s willing to at least acknowledge that key agenda items of the other party are based on legitimate public policy problems that deserve solutions.
Gingrich has a ton of problems, including hypocrisy, but the failure to craft white papers proposing policy solutions is not among them.