Newt Gingrich on Akin, extremism, and media double standards
Newt Gingrich appeared on Meet the Press Sunday morning, and offered an arresting discourse on the Todd Akin controversy, media double standards, and the abortion extremism of the Democrat Party:
The “joke” Karl Rove told about Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin, which Gingrich alludes to in the clip above, consisted of Rove saying at a breakfast for Republican donors in Tampa: “We should sink Todd Akin. If he’s found mysteriously murdered, don’t look for my whereabouts.” Rove has since privately contacted Akin to apologize for these remarks, claiming he didn’t know they would be made public. Which is not much of an excuse. Any Republican who thinks anything he says in a crowded room will not be immediately spread around the world by the media should consider spending the next few months in quiet seclusion.
Gingrich’s point about media double standards regarding Akin and Joe Biden is well made. His point about Democrat abortion extremism is even more powerful, as witness a clearly rattled Tom Friedman’s pathetic response to it. Friedman makes Gingrich’s point beautifully. The Democrats are not proudly standing up for the position Friedman credits them with defending. They count on the media to keep the spotlight off their actual beliefs, and Gingrich is exactly right about the electoral results of growing public awareness of those beliefs. Barack Obama is nowhere near anything resembling a mainstream consensus on this issue.
As for Akin, while many Republicans believe he should have stepped aside in the Missouri Senate race, he didn’t. That’s a reality that must be dealt with, not something that can be wished away with ugly “jokes” about disposing of inconvenient politicians at sea. And while polls showing the Missouri Senate race back to a dead heat are dubious, there does seem to be movement in Akin’s favor. Nothing that made his opponent, Claire McCaskill, deeply unpopular has changed. Stranger things than a Todd Akin comeback have happened in American politics. There is very little benefit for the GOP in actively seeking to prevent it.