Why are taxpayers footing the bill for the Secret Service detail assigned to guard Newt Gingrich?
During the Illinois primary, Mitt the moderate was sticking his neck out in the land of Lincoln and Obama, trying to convince us that business acumen is a predicator of what to do with the economy -- remember Herbert Hoover! Rick, the Google favorite, was barnstorming through southern Illinois for the vote of the pitchfork element, after displaying his political shrewdness by telling the people of Puerto Rico they will have to learn English to become Americans.
Where was Newt?
The man solidly in third place in the hearts of serious Republicans was in Washington. The New York Times reported that he spent the weekend "strolling along the Tidal Basin to view the cherry blossoms with his wife, Callista."
Presumably with the Secret Service agents protecting him from the bees.
By Monday, when the Illinois campaign was reaching fever pitch, Newt was locked in a war room in Arlington, Va., where he and his staff were reportedly studying the Warren Harding campaign of 1920. The last time there was a seriously brokered convention, it ended with the party bosses in a smoke-filled room picking virtually out of a hat an obscure Ohio publisher as their candidate. What a role model for the Republican Party! Without the brokered nomination of Harding, his poker-playing pals could not have pulled off the Teapot Dome Scandal of 1923.
It was bad enough that the Secret Service began deploying its detachment of agents the first week in March -- a vote of confidence he wasn't getting in many primaries. Apparently, Gingrich's people themselves had requested the protection in February.
This is an example of what I call Gingrichcare, which I find just as offensive as he and his rivals find Obamacare. It is yet another case of governmental overreach, which all the candidates theoretically oppose. Though not as invasive as the vaginal probes some in the party have been advocating in the name of keeping government out of private lives, this type of care is against serious conservative doctrine.
All serious conservatives are in favor of cutting the budget, not wasting money repairing the safety net of social welfare services. The Secret Service is an entitlement (a personal earmark, if you will) designed more to flatter Newt's ego, which admittedly is big enough to serve as a balloon in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.
If he were a serious candidate, he would have been in Illinois and the other states where he is a noncandidate, appealing to the Space Cadet vote or whomever. You can't play the game unless you bring your glove and spikes. What would the game be like if the Pittsburgh Pirates (Rick Santorum's favorite team) didn't show up for the opening of the season, just because they've had 19 losing seasons in a row?
In fact, Gingrich's campaign is now ludicrous. He has no chance of winning the nomination. Stop the charade, Newt. Land your spaceship. Save the taxpayers some money by releasing your Secret Service delegates.
If Newt needs a security blanket as he continues to plot the end game of denying Romney the nomination in Tampa, my suggestion is to get his Super PAC to pay for it. The Adelsons might have a few casino guards in Vegas they can spare to protect their investment.