A few months ago, Newt Gingrich was barely making a dent in the GOP candidate polls. However, within the past few weeks, the former House speaker suddenly has the pleasure of watching his own star rise…and rise. This sudden leap in the polls could have a lot to do with well-planned media appearances and events, compliments of his public relations team.
Whether he will continue to be a real threat to Mitt Romney (the only consistent player in the Republican polls) is still up in the air. The Washington Post’s Karen Tumulty suggests that Gingrich’s continued success in this race depends heavily on two things:
1) Gingrich’s ability to keep in check the impulses that have been his undoing in the past
2) How well can he deal with the criticism and scrutiny that come with being a serious contender
Gingrich is taking a different approach than most GOP hopefuls on his stance concerning government spending, which may be adding to his rising numbers in the polls. He proposes to spend billions on brain science research, in order to find cures for diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s because he argues that this is crucial to bringing Medicare spending under control as the current population ages. A unique proposition for a conservative Republican candidate; however, he has been able to make many arguments to back it up.
Unfortunately, with all of Gingrich’s renewed attention have come some reminders of the political baggage that he has accumulated over the past few decades since being in office. Some may remember Gingrich as having an “attack dog” style about him back in the 1980s and 1990s; however, it is clear that his political presence has evolved into an “elderly gentleman.”
In recent debates Gingrich’s impressive performances have caught the attention of many Republican voters who are now reconsidering giving him another chance. By doing so well in these debates and appearances, Gingrich has been building a positive relationship with Americans and the media. If he can continue to communicate openly with Republican’s all across the United States by sticking to his “elderly gentleman” media strategy, then I think Gingrich truly does have a good chance in this race after all.