I agree with Focus on the Family co-founder James Dobson when he objects to Callista Gingrich becoming the First Lady because, “she was a mistress for eight years,” and share the view of right wing blowhard Jason Molotov Mitchell when he says that, “Newt and Callista are the last role models we want our sons and daughters looking up to.”
Both Dobson and Mitchell are odious human beings who peddle hate and traffic in lies – but at least they appear to be true social conservatives. The unassailable fact is that if you support or plan to vote for Newt Gingrich you do not stand for traditional family values. Indeed, the free-loving morality of Gingrich and his wife mirrors the distorted stereotypes they often unfairly project onto hippies and liberals.
Will someone in the Republican Party please tell me how this scheming, cheating couple that made a mockery of family values is remotely conservative? They had a secretive, sleazy affair that they hid for years until they could no longer conceal it. The hanky-panky was occurring even as Gingrich boisterously and brazenly skewered President Bill Clinton over his affair with Monica Lewisnsky.
Thanks to Gingrich’s effective dressing down of CNN’s John King and his general bludgeoning of the mainstream media, reporters have been somewhat cowed and a tad reluctant to say the obvious: Callista is a shameless home wrecker and Newt is a philandering hypocrite who talks like a preacher and lives like a porn star. Here are a few inconvenient facts:
• Newt fell in love with his high school geometry teacher, Jackie, and married her. (If it had been a gay relationship or a Democrat, no doubt Gingrich would have called the relationship pedophilia)
• Jackie, Gingrich’s first wife, claims that while she was recovering from cancer surgery in 1980, Newt came to the hospital to discuss divorcing her so he could marry his mistress, Marianne.
• In 2011, Gingrich justified his affairs by claiming they were “partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country.” (Just imagine how passionate about America he will feel if elected president!)
• In 2012, his second wife, Marianne, who suffered from Multiple Sclerosis, claimed that when she found out about the affair with Callista, Newt gave her an ultimatum that she must share him in an “open marriage.” When she declined, he divorced her.
The truth is, Newt Gingrich treats women like used cars, trading them in for newer models when something goes wrong under the hood or the new car smell dissipates. He is a totally despicable person who has poor character, is ethically challenged, and displays essentially no integrity or personal responsibility – yet hoards of born-again Christians seem to love him.
“I came at it completely believing that evangelical women would not even consider him,” Penn Nance of Concerned Women for America told The New Yorker. “I’ve been surprised by their willingness to listen and forgive.”
It is time to drop all pretenses by pretending there is a pro-family movement in America. These two-faced scoundrels are not “pro-family” they are simply anti-gay. The only time these holier-than-thou charlatans give a damn about family values is when they slam democrats like John Edwards or to bash homosexuals. When Edwards cheated on his sick wife and lied about it he was ruined and reduced to a pariah. Gingrich engaged in the exact same behavior and instead of becoming a pariah he might become president.
To cover their putrid past, the couple is trying to hide behind religion with Callista claiming that “When Newt became a Catholic, it was one of the happiest moments of my life.” However, there are many of us who have been around long enough to remember Gingrich preaching and preening about his Christian values back when he was Speaker of the House. His sense of piety was so grandiose that he once declared himself the “definer of civilization.”
Which civilization, the orgies of ancient Greece?
Generally, I tend to not give a damn about the personal lives of politicians, as long as they do their jobs. But it is galling and appalling that Gingrich would wife swap and bed hop while denying me the right to marry. In a recent New Hampshire presidential debate Gingrich said he opposed marriage equality for LGBT couples and justified his discriminatory position by invoking the “sacrament” of marriage.
This self-righteous hypocrite wouldn’t know a sacrament from Sacramento.
Even more disturbing, in The New Yorker we learn that Callista’s longtime friend, Karen Olson, is a lesbian. Newt’s sister, Candace, is also a lesbian. With normal people, learning that friends and family members are gay changes their hearts and inevitably leads them to support equal rights. However, Newt and Callista seem more than willing to throw their “loved ones” under the bus to help his political aspirations.
If social conservatives do not stand up and smack down Gingrich’s candidacy, it is fair to say that there is no such thing as the Religious Right — just a bunch of self-righteous scolds who don’t know the difference between right and wrong.
Wayne Besen is a columnist and author of the book “Anything But Straight: Unmasking the Scandals and Lies Behind the Ex-Gay Myth.”