Julian Zelizer: Newt Gingrich is No OutsiderRoundup: Historians' Take
Julian Zelizer is a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University. He is the author of "Jimmy Carter" (Times Books) and author of the forthcoming book "Governing America" (Princeton University Press).
Princeton, New Jersey (CNN) -- Newt Gingrich likes to fancy himself a counterestablishment rebel. He has attempted to tap into the anger of tea party Republicans by reminding voters about his glory days as a maverick conservative in the House of Representatives, which culminated in the Republican takeover of Congress in 1994.
On NBC's "Meet the Press," he said, "In Florida, my case is going to be very simple. You have a clear establishment candidate in Mitt Romney. ... And you have somebody whose entire career has been a Reagan populist conservative."
The trouble is that Newt Gingrich is about as establishment as one can get. The thinness of his claim to be some kind of populist outsider exposes the myth that many conservative Republicans promote when they distance themselves from the power they actually wield and claim that they are still outside the political system.
Gingrich's personal history shows how conservatives successfully entrenched themselves in Washington and learned to love the trappings of power, as well as the electoral benefits of government. Throughout his time in Congress, Gingrich played a key role in moving conservatives from being outsiders to insiders over the course of the 1980s and 1990s....
comments powered by Disqus
- Rubio Surges Into Second In New Hampshire
- Branstad Says Cruz Ran ‘Unethical’ Campaign
- Christie Highlights Santorum’s Endorsement of Rubio
- Portman Comes Out Against Trade Deal
- Megyn Kelly Gets a Book Deal
- A Big List of the Bad Things Clinton Has Done
- An Unambiguous Sign Sanders Won Last Night’s Debate
- Still Friends at the End
- Quote of the Day
- Trump Still Leads as Clinton Slips
- Clinton Can’t Shake Image as Wall Street’s Friend
- Maddow Doesn’t See Sanders Winning
- Why Does the Media Still Shield Chelsea Clinton?
- Bush Jokes His Mother May Have Abused Him
- Rubio Closes the Gap in New Hampshire
- Newly released interactive map shows images of destroyed monuments of Mosul
- How the Rise of the Post Office Explains American Innovation
- These Americans are reliving history and don’t mind repeating it
- Britain largest home is saved for the nation
- Shelter and the slums: capturing bleak Britain 50 years ago
- WSJ features an article by a conservative calling for the abolition of Black History Month
- Mary Beard, herself a bestselling author, wonders why more women historians aren't
- Princeton U. historian Imani Perry claims mistreatment in parking ticket arrest
- Retired historian George Dennison remains on the payroll at the U. of Montana while faculty are cut
- The Atlantic profiles exciting ways to teach history