The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

His Newtness and His 176,000 Donors

Posted on | March 16, 2012 | 99 Comments

It’s Friday night and the Missouri caucuses are Saturday. Newt Gingrich isn’t even on the ballot in Missouri, which will award 52 delegates. There was a Missouri primary in February but, because of legislative hassles, that vote was officially “non-binding.” However, Rick Santorum won that primary with 55 percent of the vote — nearly a 30-point margin over Mitt Romney — and today’s caucuses will certainly ratify Santorum’s victory.

Maybe Missourians are still sore about 1838, who knows?

My point is that Santorum is about to put another one in the “W” column, the seventh state he will have won this month: Tennessee, Oklahoma and North Dakota on March 6, Kansas on March 10, Alabama and Mississippi on Tuesday, and now Missouri.

It’s important to say this, because none of the reporters, analysts or commentators on Fox News are going to tell you that Santorum’s on a winning streak, because they are indeed biased against him.

Now, let’s talk about Newt Gingrich. Ace headlined this:

Gingrich:  I Have Come Here To Chew Bubblegum and
Not Drop Out of the Race and I’m All Out of Bubblegum

Which is both cruel, and a fairly accurate summary of this:

Asked on CBS’s This Morning “under what circumstances” he would end his campaign before the convention, Gingrich responded: “Probably none.” He told host Charlie Rose, “I’ll be with you in Tampa, Charlie,” adding, “I have 176,000 donors at They want me to stay in the race.”

Hey, Newt, how many online donors did Herman Cain have before he dropped out? Lots. Rick Perry? Lots. Maybe not 176,000, but lots.

Gingrich is counting donors cumulatively, going back to late November and December, before any actual voting took place, when he was No. 1. On Dec. 13, Newt led Romney by more than 12 points, 35% to 22.3% in the Real Clear Politics average of national polls. It also includes the comeback period in January when Newt got a bump from his Jan. 21 win in South Carolina and, once again, bounced up to a lead (RCP average 31.3%-27% as of Jan. 27) in the national polls.

While he was on top, or at least a viable contender, Gingrich collected online donors by the tens of thousands, but that was “front-runner” money. Those donors were bandwagon-jumpers who thought they were giving money to The Man Who Could Beat Mitt.

And those people aren’t giving money any more because in the past six weeks it has become apparent that Newt can’t beat Mitt.

Gingrich lost Florida Jan. 31 and lost Nevada Feb. 7, and was 0-for-3 on Feb. 7, when he was third in Colorado, fourth in Minnesota and, as previously noted, failed to make the ballot in Missouri. Newt was fourth in Maine (7%) on Feb. 11; on Feb. 28 he was third in Arizona (16%) and fourth in Michigan (7%); and on March 3 he was fourth in Washington State (10%). On Super Tuesday, March 6, Gingrich recorded third-place finishes in OhioTennessee and Oklahoma, and was fourth in Alaska (14%), North Dakota (9%), Vermont (8%), Massachusetts (5%) and Idaho (2%). On March 10, he was third in Kansas and fourth in Wyoming (1%).

In case you lost count, since Feb. 7, Gingrich has placed third in five states and placed fourth in 10 states, for a total of 15 third- or fourth-place finishes in the past six weeks. You can add in the balance against all those electoral embarrassments Newt’s lone victory in his home state of Georgia on March 6, but that was completely offset by his defeats Tuesday in Mississippi and Alabama, two states his campaign had previously called “must-wins.”

Newt is clearly no longer The Man Who Could Beat Mitt.

He is now The Guy Who Usually Finishes Fourth, and the vast majority of his previous donors aren’t going to pay a dime for that kind of action. They thought they were giving money to a winner, you see, and they’re not going to follow him down the rabbit hole of Wishful Thinking.

There is also the telltale silence of Team Newt about their February fundraising numbers. On Feb. 29, the Santorum campaign told the Associated Press they had raised $9 million in February from 100,000 donors. A week later, the Romney campaign said they’d raised $11.5 million in February.

Gingrich? Crickets chirping.

That silence tells us a lot, but not nearly as much as we’ll learn next week when the official FEC numbers for February are available. What we know, however, is that the Gingrich campaign ended January with cash on hand of $1,788,590, but with debts of $1,726,085, so that their net balance (minus debt) was just $62,505.

By comparison, Santorum’s cash on hand at the end of January was $1,474,064 against debts of $956,701, for a net balance of $517,363.

This is simply astonishing: In the month where Gingrich scored his biggest success (the Jan. 21 South Carolina primary win), somehow his “burn rate” was so high that it vastly exceeded his contributions. Gingrich spent $16.4 million in January, while raising only $5.5 million. Meanwhile the underdog Santorum finished the month with a balance (minus debts) more than eight times greater than Gingrich’s!

With that in mind, what do you think Gingrich’s financial report for February is going to tell us? And how do you think his March fundraising is going so far, given his inability to win Alabama or Mississippi, and his third- and fourth-places finishes nearly everywhere else this month?

Newt’s not going to be able to reverse this perception by scoring any wins any time soon. He’s not on the ballot Saturday in Missouri and won’t finish better than third Sunday in Puerto Rico. Polls indicate Gingrich will finish third in Illinois on Tuesday. That brings us to Lousiana next Saturday, March 24: One poll last week showed Gingrich third there, too. Gingrich was in Louisiana today, begging:

NEW ORLEANS — Newt Gingrich is asking supporters for donations as small as $2.50 to keep his GOP presidential campaign going.
The former House speaker told a New Orleans audience Friday that he can’t raise as much money as front-runner Mitt Romney can. But he said he is gaining 500 to 1,000 new donors a day. He said many of them give small but that he welcomes amounts that might lead to larger contributions later

He’s already desperate, and when the February financial reports are made public, showing a campaign that is essentially bankrupt, whatever little puddles of hope Gingrich has been able to sell to those “500 to 1,000 new donors a day” (a dubious claim) will evaporate almost instantly. If Newt then loses March 24 in Louisiana, it’s over.

UPDATE: Welcome, Instapundit readers! And thanks to the commenter who called my attention to a Feb. 17 article by Luke Rosiak of The Washington Times:

When Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign disclosed in October that it planned to pay the candidate $70,000, the transfer was unusual for a campaign committee. But weeks ago, the former House speaker revised his bill for the third quarter: He actually expected to personally receive $115,000 to reimburse himself for expenses during that period.
The campaign would not explain how the candidate forgot about and then found $45,000 in receipts. Far beyond that payment, the destinations of dollars donated to Mr. Gingrich’s campaign are being obscured by the unprecedented use of a clearly prohibited tactic, The Washington Times found — one that has accompanied the flow of the better part of $1 million in unexplained cash to Mr. Gingrich, family members and top staffers. . . .

Read the whole thing. How I missed that article last month, I don’t know, nor do I know what the explanation for such unusal accounting might be. But one can imagine that it raised eyebrows among the big-money donors. Newt would probably dismiss such financial questions as coming from “the elite media.”

UPDATE II: My attempted humor about Missouri’s less-than-exemplary history of religious tolerance has generated some less than mirthful comments from those who sympathize with the plight of 19th-century Mormons. But my mild jest about 1838 could never rival the studied cruelty of Allahpundit’s well-aimed shot at Gingrich:

Second look at Newt staying in the race to gratify his delusions of grandeur about being chosen as a consensus nominee at a brokered convention?



99 Responses to “His Newtness and His 176,000 Donors”

  1. Pathfinder's wife
    March 17th, 2012 @ 1:38 pm

    I think given the situation, with everyone at everyone’s throats, maybe a brokered convention (if done wisely..hahah!) may be the only thing that works.  It would have to be a case of not selecting a person everybody wants, or who wants it the most, but who it HAS to be (your guess is as good as mine as to the identity of that person).  Of course, this leads to all manner of other problems in a democratically elected republic that values its freedom (beware the heimat, no matter how attractive!), and of course, we already have one version in office so there’s that to consider.
    If this keeps up, well, I’m glad I’m an independent and not affiliated with anyone — the elephants seem to be in a race with the donks as to who can commit seppuku first.

  2. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 1:49 pm

     Y’all heard wrong and I say that as a professional horndog.  He didn’t say a damn thing any of the other candidates have said.

  3. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

     Newt Gingrich does not do the right thing.  EVER.  Except what’s right for the little voices in Newt’s head.  The only difference between Newt and Clinton is that Clinton was good at it.  He played Gingrich like a cheap fiddle.

  4. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 1:52 pm

     Yes, and he explained it so well you can’t even spell “Alinsky”.

  5. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 1:57 pm

     I agree with you on that: NOT ONE RED CENT to the RNC.

    I’m sitting here in Los Angeles looking at a letter I just received from Rich N. Bond, former RNC chairman, endorsing a Democrat in my CD “…because a Democrat will surely be elected in your district.”  Fuck him.  Fuck Rove. Fuck Romney and Whitman and Fiorina, McConnell and Cornyn and anyone who thinks blind cheerleading for this DEAD party will accomplish anything.

  6. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 1:59 pm

     I’ve been quite coherent thank you.  I started as far outside the DC machine as I could with Palin and I’ve been working my way in as necessity impels me.  When Palin dropped out I looked at Perry until I realized TX wanted to nominate a mime, then Cain, now Santorum.

    That is as far as I go.  End stop.

  7. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:01 pm

     Missourians got fed up with compromise around 1821.  Ain’t been the same since.

  8. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:02 pm


  9. Adjoran
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:30 pm

     It was probably that the people running his Super-PAC lack political experience.  TV and radio have a limited amount of commercial time available, and they already have contracts for much of it.  Often they sell out of political time and if the buying agency isn’t careful enough to read the fine print, the ads can run well after the election.

  10. Adjoran
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:36 pm

     Sorry, but with the proportional allocations and winner-take-all primaries, Santorum needs to win nearly 2/3 of the remaining delegates.  Short of Romney withdrawing, it’s not happening.

    But maybe a Magic Pony will come down from Heaven and give him some Angel Delegates.  It’s more likely than he wins a majority.

  11. Adjoran
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:37 pm

     They are both good at doing the wrong thing.  Clinton is good at getting people to still like him when they know what he did.  Newt would still be hated if he rescued an entire orphanage full of nuns, babies, and puppies.

  12. Adjoran
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:40 pm

     So the housing bubble only burst because of gas prices?

    That’s so stupid that whoever said not only should not be elected President, they shouldn’t be allowed outside without a helmet.

  13. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:40 pm

    Prezackly. Except Newt would want to put the orphans in the workhouse and sell the puppies to Mitt for car trip laughs.

  14. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:49 pm

     Well, at least those nuns would sure be grateful.

  15. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:54 pm

     How is protecting your self, family, property and community from a bunch of deluded nutbag cultists “religious persecution or foul deeds”?

  16. Huh
    March 17th, 2012 @ 2:58 pm

    Would you people stop saying “get over it” to each other? Get over it.

  17. Adjoran
    March 17th, 2012 @ 3:06 pm

     No, I’m saying if he hadn’t been already sinking like a stone, it would have been big news.  It looks crooked to me.  Especially when he is paying himself over $200,000 in cash to reimburse expenses which have to be less than $200 to remain undisclosed, and buying his domain name from his wife’s company.

  18. Adjoran
    March 17th, 2012 @ 3:11 pm

     You have no sense of shame at all, do you?

  19. Pathfinder's wife
    March 17th, 2012 @ 3:13 pm

    I”m trying to be diplomatic here, ok?…and the reaction for the mob did get a bit extreme (as these things usually do).  Shooting 10 yos. is a bit much, then again, the Mormons were not innocent either (some of them were dirty rotten scoundrels to be honest — eh, every group has them, and it’s time they didn’t get protected; truth will set you free and all that), and there you have it.

  20. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 4:18 pm

     Why do nuns hate puppies?

  21. Asian_chic
    March 17th, 2012 @ 4:52 pm

    Sorry, I had to re-read a few times. My bad 🙂 I think it’s your avi that’s distracting me. lol

  22. Scout
    March 17th, 2012 @ 6:24 pm

     Gas prices caused the housing bubble to burst?

    Think that’s a bit of a reach but I’ll agree it all works hand-in-hand.

    However, all it does it show Santorum for what he is, “Newt-lite”.

    Santorum has been parroting Newt for quite awhile now but he’ll never measure up to the real thing.

  23. Scout
    March 17th, 2012 @ 6:27 pm

     wow, brilliant counter-argument.

    your mom must be proud.

  24. Asian_chic
    March 17th, 2012 @ 7:01 pm

    This is another spending spree update from Feb. 17 article. Another campaign warning…

  25. Ford Prefect
    March 17th, 2012 @ 7:51 pm

    It’s no stretch at all.  Look at the numbers and look at the chronology.  We have had mortgages going to so-called “people who can’t afford them” for decades without a housing crisis.  But when you have a weak housing market (forced on us by Obama, Pelosi, Reid, Frank, Dodd, and the rest of the liberal Dems) AND you put people out of work by driving up fuel costs, you WILL precipitate a mortgage crisis.

    How soon people forget that American Airlines laid off 100,000 employees as a direct byproduct of the Pelosi and Reid drilling ban back in ’07.  Jet fuel prices skyrocketed, AA and other airlines suffered dramatically.  When people can’t afford to take a vacation, the airlines and the hotel/ recreational industries suffer.  When diesel fuel   prices go through the roof, truckers begin having to sell their trucks back to the bank. When people divert their income from buying products from small businesses to filling their tanks, small businesses go bankrupt.

    As all those people go broke, they lose their homes, homes they COULD afford before the Dems came along. 

    By the way, I’ve NEVER heard Newt make the connection between the Dem energy idiocy in ’07 and ’08 and the mortgage crisis. 

    Santorum gets it, Newt probably does as well but has never really talked about it AFAIK.

  26. Ford Prefect
    March 17th, 2012 @ 7:53 pm

    Just because you are an economic moron Adjoran, doesn’t mean everyone else is.  

    Just what do you think precipitated the mortgage crisis if not for the rapid rise in energy costs?  The mortgage situation was a house of cards; all it took was a significant increase in the cost of living for people to start losing their jobs and then their homes.

    That’s what happened. History is a wonderful thing.  Learn some.

  27. Ford Prefect
    March 17th, 2012 @ 8:58 pm

    Sorry JM, this makes no sense.  People supported who they thought was the best candidate. If that candidate drops or is forced out (i.e. Cain) then what do you expect them to do, stick with the candidate who dropped out?  

    They have to go to the next best candidate don’t they?

  28. Ford Prefect
    March 17th, 2012 @ 9:07 pm

    Once again, we all appreciate your soft bigotry.

  29. geoffrobinson
    March 17th, 2012 @ 9:23 pm

    It should be noted that Newt is the only candidate that is causing Obama to act nervous. (regarding the $2.50 gasoline)

    Honestly, if you are interested in poking holes in Obama, you want Gingrich to stay in the race as long as possible. At the very least, you want Gingrich to be on your campaign staff.

  30. richard mcenroe
    March 17th, 2012 @ 9:57 pm

     Ford — Newt was too busy giving “history lectures” to Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac to follow the actual history.

  31. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:18 pm

     Somewhere in a dark, candle-lit room, Ford Fairlane is praying a desperate prayer to save your soul from its anti-Christian bigotry, thou heathen.

  32. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:28 pm

     Did they teach you in Vacation Bible School how to bore the living god damn fuck out of people or is that something that just comes naturally?

  33. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:31 pm

     I vigorously enforce Natural Law on porn every once in a while. And then I need some good tissue.

  34. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:36 pm

     About a bunch of nutjob cultists telling them “God” had given them their land. Then they and their “Prophet” were given a lesson in reality and sent on their fucking way.

  35. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:38 pm

     Yeah, seriously. Who did those Missourians think they were dealing with, a bunch of crazy fanatical cultists or something?

  36. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:40 pm

     Why do you want him to be ashamed of one of the few times he’s right?

  37. ThePaganTemple
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:43 pm

    I want him to be President. He’s the closest we’ll ever get to seeing the bloody mangled corpses of leftist journalists splattered all over a stage.

  38. JR Dogman
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:44 pm

    I said I’d put a pair of clamp pliers on my nose and vote for Mitt if he’s the nominee, BUT I still don’t like him and I never will, for many reasons including his sicko maltreatment of his family dog.

    AND what I meant is that for many dog-owners who aren’t conservative political junkies, or are conservatives who have had it with the GOP to the point where they will not vote for a Democrat-like pol yet again, IF THEY ARE DOG-LOVERS, when they learn about what Mitt Romney did to his family’s dog, THAT could the deciding factor in their voting third party or staying home. 

    We all weep for our nation, every day as we watch the destruction being carried out by the Democrats and not being fought tooth and nail by a serious, conservative GOP — but reality is what it is:  Few people follow the issues with the same assiduity as you and I and (I would assume) the average poster on this comment thread, but people tend to feel passionate about their dogs, and there are 70 MILLION-PLUS dog owners in this country. That does not include non-dog owners who love dogs but can’t keep a dog for whatever reason or reasons. 

    If, notwithstanding that he is not a conservative and the base can’t stand him, Mitt Romney is able to buy the GOP nomination by tearing down the other two major candidates, he will not have a financial advantage over BHO — indeed he will be at a disadvantage — and Team Obama WILL roll out a series of ads about the day Mitt Romney tied his family dog on the roof of his car in a kennel, so that the animal was so terrified from the gale whistling through kennel bars, it crapped it self so that good ‘ol Mittens had to hose it and the car off at a rest stop.  

    As I remember the story, there may be a police record of the above event, as there was a police officer involved. If the officer is alive, Team Obama will find him and whatever his political affiliation may be, the press will follow him around and he will be forced to discuss the day when he had to tell a grown man that tying a dog in a kennel to the roof of your car constitutes ANIMAL ABUSE. 

    THAT is all I am saying. If you think this story won’t come back to haunt Mitt Romney if we are unfortunate enough to have him as our GOP nominee, think again. 

    Mitt Romney is a bad candidate to begin with, for many reasons — the dog story is only one of them, and it’s important in our (thank God) dog-lovin’ US of A. 


  39. JR Dogman
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:47 pm

    Thanks, Scout. I just donated that $25! 

    Incidentally, for the record, $25 is real money to me. It won’t make or break me, but I do look at it as 1/3 of my phone bill or of my springtime electric bill. I wish I could give Newt more, because Newt speaks for me. 

  40. JR Dogman
    March 17th, 2012 @ 10:52 pm

    Good job finding that link, Ford — I remember reading that article. 

    The price of fuel affects EVERYTHING — the higher it goes, the more damage is done to the economy, period. 

  41. Scout
    March 17th, 2012 @ 11:48 pm

     In the same boat myself, budget is tight.

    Keep up the good fight and, as the saying goes, don’t let the bastards get you down.

  42. M. Simon
    March 18th, 2012 @ 3:20 am

    I think Rick would make a fine President in keeping with the Obama tradition. A disaster. But a different kind of disaster. No doubt he is priming the pump for the next Democrat. People get tired of “moral” administrations much faster than they get tired of “corrupt” administrations. Sadly.

    If Republicans would just focus on their “moderate” brand of corruption we would all be better off.

  43. M. Simon
    March 18th, 2012 @ 3:25 am

    BTW Stacy,

    This bit by a former Dillon, Read partner and former HUD Secretary under Bush 1 has been going around:

    After reading Dark Alliance, I started to study the extraordinary moneymaking business that DOJ and agencies like HUD had built in enforcement that
    really only made sense if in fact the government was entirely complicit
    in narcotics trafficking and related mortgage and mortgage securities

    If you want to read more about how drug money took down the country you can read Financial Coup d’Etat. If you want the whole story you can start with the table of contents.

  44. Mick Stockinger
    March 18th, 2012 @ 9:43 am

     I don’t believe for a minute you’re a dog-lover.  Any real dog lover would know that dogs like nothing better than to ride outdoors in the bed of the pickup or with half their bodies out of the window.

    The irony is that the Seamus story is indicative of why Romney has been so successful and why people who criticize him are whiny losers.  He wanted to go on vacation with his family and dog and didn’t have adequate room in the family vehicle of his children and the dog, so he worked the problem.  That’s a great American doing what great Americans do–fix things, which is why I support the man.

  45. Bob Belvedere
    March 18th, 2012 @ 6:19 pm

    That’s the only reason I put up with Adj – my wife’s favorite Stooge is Larry [Array-Lay].

  46. Bob Belvedere
    March 18th, 2012 @ 6:22 pm

    You forgot the link, Richard: NOT ONE RED CENT

  47. Boojum4
    March 18th, 2012 @ 11:53 pm

    Rick,  you supposed to be about “family values”— stay home !!!  your wife and 7 kids should be your next priority after God.  being POTUS–   you don’t have the time

  48. JR Dogman
    March 19th, 2012 @ 1:14 am

    OK, I’ll bite. Dislike of Mitt Romney — for any reason — is not grounds for classification as a whiny loser. In contrast, to call someone a whiny loser for disliking one’s preferred candidate is childish behavior. It’s a de facto declaration to all that you are unable to engage in friendly debate.

    Nevertheless, on to your point. No matter what exactly Mitt Romney has fixed over his storied career, it is more than fair to describe him as not being very likable. The numbers bear this out: people are not excited about Mitt. That’s why he hasn’t run away with the nomination, despite having an enormous organization and a tremendous political war chest. 

    My guess is that to you, a whiny loser is anyone who asks questions and raises issues you don’t want asked and/or raised. By that definition, I guess I am a whiny loser… along with the likes of Mark Levin, Rush, Tammy Bruce, Gov. Palin, and others who are less than thrilled with Mitt Romney as a potential presidential candidate. 

    Now, as for whether or not you “believe” I’m a dog-lover, what are you, ten years old? On top of that, do you not know the details of the Mitt Romney dog story?  He didn’t put the family dog in the back of a pickup truck so it could take in the fresh country air — this is what he did: You don’t believe I’m a dog-lover? Fine. If you say you don’t think what he did qualifies as animal abuse, I don’t believe that.  I think that any fair-minded person would say it does, and I think you would, too, were the story about, e.g., President Obama rather than your preferred GOP candidate.  But that’s not even the point of my original post, which is that if Mitt is the GOP nominee, this dog story is going to plague him from the jump. You can pretend it it won’t, but this story will be a massive headache not just for Romney, but for the GOP, period. Those running for congress, the Senate, for governorships across the country, will all be asked to take a stance on “their” candidate’s treatment of his dog. And people will be listening. Mitt Romney has not demonstrated any ability to direct the narrative in his favor, and the media will gleefully talk about poor Seamus tied on the roof of the Romney family car. There will be tons of dog-lovers whose vote the GOP might have had but will kiss goodbye — these voters won’t be conservative political junkies, rather, ironically, they will be the kind of people who form their political opinions based on expensive attack ads.  

    As for myself, no matter what you may think, I am a lifelong dog-lover. Last summer, my dog of 15-1/2 years died, and it was the worst thing that ever happened to me. I was distressed for months, then, just before Thanksgiving, I got a foster dog, and every day I am so happy to have her in my life. If Mitt Romney is the GOP nominee, I will, as I said above, vote for him… but I won’t feel too good about it.

  49. Illinois Primary Today; Rick Santorum Schedules Rally in Gettysburg, Pa. : The Other McCain
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