As Herman Cain continues to do whatever he is doing, Rick Perry continues to self destruct, Mitt Romney continues to keep the wind at his back for the simple reason that he's not like most of the other candidates, which is to say a slave to the Tea Party, Newt Gingrich is undergoing a back-from-the-dead metamorphosis.
In other years, this would be unlikely. After all, Gingrich's entire staff bailed on him earlier this year because he was more interested in jet setting with his third wife, Callista, than going out on the stump in Iowa, and then his fund raising dried up in the wake of the revelation that wifie had a $500,000 line of credit at Tiffany's.
But the former House speaker is back with a vengeance and a new CBS News poll has him running near the front of the pack, more or less neck-and-neck with Romney and not far behind Cain. The latest PPP poll has him in the lead.
Props to Gingrich for positioning himself as the lesser of other evils -- yes, it's been that kind of year as the Republican field is slowly winnowed down -- and he may yet be the go-to guy if the nominating convention deadlocks between, say, Cain and Romney.
I suspect that this would be fine for the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue because when all is said and done, Gingrich is a resume without a man.
Among the accomplishment on the resume of the man who led the impeachment charge against Bill Clinton are serial infidelities, beaucoup nutty ideas, a sucky relationship with the news media, and a legendarily short fuse. Gingrich, meanwhile, has been one of the major players in injecting a mean spiritedness into modern American political discourse, and at times he can be downright nasty. Oh, and an ego as big as some of Callista's diamonds.
None of that should necessarily be a disqualifier, but when Gingrich talks about bringing change to Washington a mere four years after Barack Obama gave that a try, it's time to take cover, because his weapon of choice is dynamite.