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September 30, 2007
Gingrich Decides Not to Run
The months long teasing by Newt Gingrich about his plans for the 2008 presidential campaign is over.
The former Speaker of the House announced through a spokesman that he will not be running:
"Newt is not running," spokesman Rick Tyler said. "It is legally impermissible for him to continue on as chairman of American Solutions (for Winning the Future) and to explore a campaign for president." There really never was much of a chance that Gingrich would have thrown his hat in the ring. The daunting task of raising tens of million of dollars along with the huge head start of the other candidates made a run virtually impossible. And despite the unhappiness of some conservatives with the uneven performance of Senator Fred Thompson so far, the former Tennessee Senator continues to do well in national polls. All of these factors combined to keep Newt on the sideliness in 2008.
Gingrich decided "to continue on raising the challenges America faces and finding solutions to those challenges" as the group's chairman, Tyler said, "rather than pursuing the presidency."
Over the past few months, Gingrich had stoked speculation he might enter the crowded GOP field, despite the seemingly insurmountable challenge of entering the race several months after the other Republicans have been running.
He noted that GOP voters, especially conservatives, remain unhappy with the candidates and acknowledged that the much-anticipated entry of former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson into the race had been bumpy.
What about 2012? If a Democrat is elected president, Gingrich will have 4 years of his "Winning the Future" group and their highly visible efforts to reform government and politics behind him. How much good they will do is open to question. But few doubt that the group will serve as a nice platform for Gingrich to maintain a high profile in the media and among conservatives.
I wrote a piece more than two years ago for AT on the reasons I think Newt shouldn't run.