How Newt Gingrich Has Been Underappreciated

This is not an endorsement, but rather an attempt to put Newt Gingrich in context.

Perhaps because of his relentless (and ultimately successful) efforts to gain the House of Representatives for the Republicans in 1994, Speaker Gingrich has been thought of and portrayed as the most partisan of partisans. It would be wrong to think of him that way.

Newt Gingrich has always been a man interested in ideas. He is not especially interested in serving an interest group population. What he really wants to do — and you can see this in his policy books, speeches, and even in his novels(!) — is to find innovative solutions to long-standing problems. When Andrei Cherny, a speechwriter for President Clinton, published The Next Deal, a book on government for the 21st century, Gingrich was quick to offer praise for the portions with which he could agree and to encourage everyone interested in public policy to read it.

One might also remember the brief surge of interest in Alvin Toffler’s books, such as Future Shock and The Third Wave, when Speaker Gingrich endorsed them. He has always been forward-looking and ambitious for the well-being of the nation.

Selfishly, I’d like to see him continue on in the primary election if only so as to hear him talk about solutions. That is his strong suit. Perhaps some future president will invest him with a cabinet office or a commission where he can put his estimable qualities to work.