I'm no reporter.
Went with APK, Ralph, and Taffy to the Newt Gingrich Book Event at the National Press Club. Tickets were free, and no matter what you think about Newt, he's one larger-than-life politician. So, we went.
He's just completed the final book in his trilogy about the Civil War. A very interesting concept. Basically, he and a co-author/ historian (he admitted that he loves writing but hates editing) decided to play on the idea that Southerners always say "If we'd just won Gettysburg." His book talks about what would have happened if Lee had one at Gettysburg. It's based on the principal of the book If the South had Won the Civil War. It's fiction based on history. He said "It's easier to imitate than to invent."
So, like I said, I'm no reporter. I didn't take notes... I can't give you a transcript of the whole evening. But here's what I took away from the evening.
Newt didn't comment on whether he'd run in 2008
Newt did comment on his website- www.newt.com- he told us all to sign up for updates.
Newt answered the questions asked even though they were totally not about his book.
Newt gave advice to a guy from UC Berkley about how to handle his ultra-left wing and overly opinionated professors. (get 5 people together to challenge his opinion. If he damages your GPA for declaring that his opinion is not based on fact, speak out about your rights and get him out even if he's tenured).
Newt gave his opinion on why school systems fail (children are taught from a syllabus vs. teachers talking about what's going on in the world and what interests the children). I was actually impressed that he was able to quote actual statistics to back up his argument when the question was something he totally couldn't have prepared for, ya know, since it had nothing to do with the book. (Detroit's school system has a 21% graduation rate for incoming Freshman).
Newt was VERY polite to an extremely dumb and obnoxious woman wearing a moomoo.
Newt thinks Jimmy Carter sucks.
Newt think 20% of Americans are Democrats. 20% of Americans are Republicans. and 60% of Americans are disgusted. That was kind of funny of Newt.
Newt was almost endearing when he talked about his dad here and there.
Newt looks a little bit like Teddy Roosevelt and a little bit like Teddy Kennedy.
Newt signed the books I bought for my father and JFJ, Jr. "Your friend, Newt Gingrich." How'd he decide on that as his signature? Best Wishes was too over done? Newt's everyone's friend.
The woman's questions (first up) began, "I'm a Democrat. I want to teach history. When you mentioned the founding fathers at the beginning, how come you didn't mention Washington? Do you not like Washington?"
Moron. Yes, someone in politics will now say "I really hate George Washington. Dude sucks. Powdered hair."
Then the woman came BACK UP to the microphone to announce that she was an Activist and ask if Newt would like to come to speak at her program, Camp Democracy, on the Mall. He politely referred her to his press agent.
And that was Newt. I liked hearing him speak. He's definitely knowledgeable and interesting and charismatic. And, it was rather refreshing to have him answer questions you know a Cabinet and professional speech writer didn't create an answer for...
So, Newt in 2008? And, George Washington Sucks!