While the debate among Republicans and others continues over whether Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney or someone else better represents Conservatives, the truth is now becoming clear. Gingrich's own studious understanding of American history reveals him as a "big government" fan. In an excellent editorial in the weekend Wall Street Journal, he is quoted as saying his point of view is not libertarian, but "more in the Alexander Hamilton-Teddy Roosevelt tradition of conservatism". In so capsulizing and positioning his viewpoint, Gingrich revealed himself as decidedly NOT in the Tea Party or limited federal government camp.
Hamilton, after all, was the first "Federalist" among the early American leaders who thought the new government of our nation needed to be robust. He proposed the first Bank of the United States. Teddy Roosevelt was "a man's man", but when it came to government and power, he repeatedly flexed central government muscle and ran against his own Republican party in the end, on a Progressive platform. The opposition to Hamilton's Bank was considerable, with James Madison and Thomas Jefferson being prominent leaders, and Patrick Henry adding support from Virginia. Madison, Jefferson and Hamilton dueled over the meaning of "necessary" in the "necessary and proper" clause of the Constitution. It is a historical irony that Jefferson, who some Democrats regard as the father of their Party, wrote a strong statement saying that a broad or loose construction of Congressional power would swallow up other provisions of the Constitution and render their limitations meaningless.
Americans of every political persuasion except far Left socialism and progressivism see clearly now that the federal government has grown too much, to the point it threatens the American people themselves. Newt Gingrich is not the guy you want to put in charge of reforming and limiting the federal government.
Harvey M. Sheldon is an attorney in Chicago, Illinois. The views expressed are his own and not on behalf of any other person, client or candidate.