Newt Gingrich Comes to Orlando for Campaign Disaster
John Heilemann describes a disasterous Orlando campaign stop for New Gingrich
In a weekend of trailing the former speaker to a series of events along the I-4 corridor, there was just no escaping that a campaign that was flying high (and even to outer space) ten days ago has now come crashing back to earth. At what was billed as a Hispanic town hall meeting at another church yesterday in Orlando, Gingrich was greeted by row after after row of empty pews and maybe 40 voters in attendance. For a full hour after the scheduled starting time, Gingrich and his wife Callista, sat outside, coistered in his campaign bus - possibly sulking, possibly fuming at his his campaign's horrid advance work, and surely praying a few more souls show up. When Gingrich finally entered the building, it was announced that the event was a town hall no more; the candidate would speak briefly, then take pictures with the scant few who'd turned up. And "briefly" was an understatement: Standing behind a Lucite lactern, Gingrich talked for barely eight minutes and evelen seconds, looking deflated and exhausted. By no small margin, it was the worst and saddest campaign event event that I have witnessed in this presidential cycle.
My God. Newt Gingrich is the Spinal Tap of politics.
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