Home/Daniel Larison/Support for Gingrich Is Support for The Quintessential “Establishment” Republican

Support for Gingrich Is Support for The Quintessential “Establishment” Republican

James Poulos describes the thinking of pro-Gingrich conservatives:

The concentration of anti-establishment conservatives around Gingrich shows what many of them now plainly admit: the stakes are high, and they are willing to risk spectacular defeat. Opting instead for a slow, humiliating political death is no choice at all.

I’m not sure that the term “anti-establishment conservative” means anything when it encompasses the likes of Palin, Cain, and Perry. If there are conservatives who think that backing Gingrich is a way to stick it to the powers-that-be in their party, they have already been defeated. An “anti-establishment” protest that makes Gingrich its standard-bearer has zero credibility. It isn’t just that Gingrich and his recent record embody virtually everything that many conservative activists loathe, but that he is winning some of them over by using the most superficial cultural and rhetorical cues available. Conservative Gingrich supporters are at a point where their identity politics and policy-free pseudo-populism have become self-parodying.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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