Mitt beat Rick, but Newt beat Barack

Only one Re­pub­li­can has made Obama squirm

The Washington Times Daily - - Metro - By Dr. Mil­ton R. Wolf

This wouldn’t be the first time the me­dia missed the real story. In the wake of a split Su­per Tues­day, Mitt Rom­ney and Rick San­to­rum scored wins against each other, but it was for­mer Speaker Newt Gin­grich who sin­gle-hand­edly drove Pres­i­dent Obama into panic mode.

Mr. Rom­ney de­serves enor­mous credit for his suc­cess in the early pri­maries, but the un­de­ni­able fact re­mains that he has not demon­strated the abil­ity to win a race with­out vastly out­spend­ing his op­po­nents, of­ten by 5-to-1 and even 12-to-1. He will not en­joy this lux­ury against the sit­ting pres­i­dent and the bil­lion-dol­lar Obama ma­chine. Veteran po­lit­i­cal writer John Fund says Repub­li­cans are “fool­ing them­selves” if they ig­nore this sober­ing re­al­ity.

Mr. San­to­rum has out­per­formed ex­pec­ta­tions but con­tin­ues to make him­self an easy tar­get for Democrats. Ea­gerly tak­ing the bait, the for­mer se­na­tor de­clared of birth con­trol, “It’s not OK.”

Mr. San­to­rum of­fered up the ver­bal equiv­a­lent of for­mer Pres­i­dent Lyn­don B. John­son show­ing off his gall­blad­der sur­gi­cal scar by dou­bling down on his prior as­ser­tion that for­mer pres­i­dent John F. Kennedy’s speech on the sepa­ra­tion of church and state makes him want to “throw up.” Sigh. The com­mer­cials write them­selves.

And Ron Paul. Few love our Con­sti­tu­tion as much as Mr. Paul, and for that, many of us love him dearly. If only we could con­vince him that a nu­clear Iran poses as much of a threat to our Con­sti­tu­tion as does the Fed­eral Re­serve. Should Mah­moud Ah­madine­jad suc­cess­fully launch a strike against Is­rael, or worse yet, Amer­ica, brace your­self for a beefed-up Pa­triot Act 2.0 and a mil­i­tary bud­get that ex­pands faster than Terry Brad­shaw’s waist­line be­fore Nutrisys­tem.

And then there was Newt Gin­grich, the Lazarus of the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign, as the Drudge Re­port re­cently called him, ready to rise once again. While the main­stream me­dia stayed fo­cused on the game of check­ers be­tween Mr. Rom­ney and Mr. San­to­rum, Mr. Gin­grich forced Pres­i­dent Obama into an as­ton­ish­ing game of chess.

In a 30-minute video ti­tled “$2.50 per Gal­lon Gaso­line, En­ergy In­de­pen­dence and Jobs,” Mr. Gin­grich un­veiled his vi­sion for re­newed Amer­i­can pros­per­ity cen­tered around oil and nat­u­ral-gas pro­duc­tion. He demon­strated his un­par­al­leled in­sight into the in­ter­sec­tion of en­ergy, se­cu­rity and pros­per­ity. Mr. Gin­grich rightly de­clared that never again should an Amer­i­can pres­i­dent bow be­fore a Saudi king. Mean­while, Mr. Obama, stung by his re­cent half-bil­lion-dol­lar failed Solyn­dra boon­dog­gle, be­gan float­ing his lat­est green fan­tasy of har­vest­ing al­gae to cure the pain at the pump.

Pan­icked by Mr. Gin­grich, Mr. Obama was forced off his game and re­peat­edly tried to respond, only mak­ing mat­ters worse for him­self. He stayed true to the Democrats’ anti-en­ergy agenda and mocked Repub­li­cans for want­ing to drill for new oil. This made the pres­i­dent the butt of a joke for Jay Leno on “The Tonight Show”: Democrats claim that new drilling for oil won’t help us for at least 10 years, but haven’t they been say­ing that now for more than 10 years?

Mr. Obama boasts that oil pro­duc­tion is up un­der his ad­min­is­tra­tion. True, but only be­cause the pres­i­dent hasn’t yet stopped pro­duc­tion on pri­vately owned land. Mr. Gin­grich cut right through his pro­found dis­hon­esty: “Un­der Pres­i­dent Obama, be­cause he is so anti-amer­i­can-en­ergy, we have ac­tu­ally had a 40 per­cent re­duc­tion in de­vel­op­ment of oil off­shore, and we have had a 40 per­cent re­duc­tion in the de­vel­op­ment of oil on fed­eral lands,” Mr. Gin­grich pounced. “So in the area he con­trols, pro­duc­tion is down and the area that is hard at the free en­ter­prise stuff where peo­ple get rich, pro­duc­tion is up. So he is now claim­ing credit for the area he can’t con­trol in or­der to have us think he is ac­tu­ally for what he op­poses.”

Mr. Gin­grich re­duced the once-con­fi­dent “Yes, we can!” 2008 ver­sion of Mr. Obama into the backpedal­ing “It’s not my fault” 2012 ver­sion right be­fore our eyes. A de­fen­sive Mr. Obama dis­sem­bled: “We know there’s no sil­ver bul­let that will bring down gas prices or re­duce our de­pen­dence on for­eign oil overnight.” Wait, what about that al­gae?

Newt had Barack right where he wanted him.

“A pres­i­den­tial pen could to­day sign ap­proval of the Key­stone pipe­line. That’s 700,000 bar­rels a day. A pres­i­den­tial pen could to­day sign ap­proval to go back to the Gulf of Mex­ico. That’s about 400,000 bar­rels a day. A pres­i­den­tial pen could to­day ap­prove ar­eas of Alaska that we know have oil.” With three sig­na­tures, Mr. Gin­grich in­structed the pres­i­dent, “you would have 2.3 mil­lion bar­rels a day of ad­di­tional en­ergy in the United States. So I would say, we’re not look­ing for sil­ver bul­lets. We’re look­ing for pres­i­den­tial lead­er­ship.” Check and check­mate.

With this, Peter Fer­rara, for­mer ad­viser to Pres­i­dent Rea­gan, de­clared that Mr. Obama had just lost his first de­bate. The GOP race re­mains open. So ask your­self this: Which Re­pub­li­can can­di­date be­side Newt Gin­grich has demon­strated the abil­ity to make Barack Obama squirm?


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