Tonight, ABC is airing an interview with
the ex-wife one of the ex-wives Newt Gingrich abandoned for another woman, while his wife was battling illness. The second ex-Mrs. Gingrich will supposedly discuss Newt's request for an open marriage so he could screw around, sans guilt, before he just up and left her altogether.
So naturally, Rush Limbaugh, who has been married even more times than Newt, is rushing to Newt's defense:
Now, there's an accusation out there that Newt wanted an open marriage, just like Bill and Hillary. And in fact, Newt even had the politeness to ask permission for it. Do you think Bill ever did that?Hardy har har. See, even when a Republican cheats on his wife, it's really about Bill Clinton, and how the Most Important Blowjob In HistoryTM was was so much worse. Because, um ... well, because. So there.
Of course, even in his defense-of-Newt tirade, Rush is full of it. As TPM reported in 2010, Newt wasn't being "polite" by asking his wife for permission to cheat; he'd already been banging his aide, Callista, for six years before he got around to asking Marianne if she was cool with that because:
Gingrich just kept saying [Marianne] was a Jaguar and all he wanted was a Chevrolet. ” ‘I can’t handle a Jaguar right now.’ He said that many times. ‘All I want is a Chevrolet.’ ”Yes, he's the poster boy for polite adultery, isn't it?
But Rush's defense goes even further, in the form of a "note" from a "friend":
So Newt wanted an open marriage. BFD. At least he asked his wife for permission instead of cheating on her. That's a mark of character, in my book. Newt's a victim. We all are. Ours is the horniest generation. We were soldiers in the sex revolution. We were tempted by everything from Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice to Plato's retreat, Deep Throat to no fault divorce. Many of us paid the ultimate price, AIDS, abortion, or alimony for the cultural marching orders we got. Hell, for all I know we should be getting disability from the government.Yeah. Newt's a victim because who can possibly resist the temptation to screw your aide behind your wife's back and then ask for retroactive permission? Who hasn't been there, right? See, Newt—and all the other Republicans who stomp around this country moralizing about "family values" while they're breaching their own marriage vows—are just hapless victims because of Plato. And porn. And, of course, Bill Clinton:
“I think after the blue dress, and Clinton, it doesn’t matter anymore, You know?” said Barbara Thompson, a retired school teacher waiting in line to shake Gingrich’s hand after his second stop of the day in Beaufort.Because no one ever cheated on his wife before Bill Clinton came along, right? And besides, according to Rush, Newt's ex-wife—sorry, Newt's second ex-wife—is just a bitter ex, and who doesn't have a few of those around?
Thompson is undecided (she’s picking between Gingrich and Mitt Romney) but she said whatever Marianne has to say won’t sway her, or really have much of an impact here thanks to a change in the “standards” in the country.
The angry ex-spouse is not something that's unique in this culture. Everybody has an angry ex-spouse, or has had at one point or another if they've been divorced.Of course, Rush and his "friend" are right about one thing: Newt's serial adultery, plus the unbelievable chutzpah he showed by eventually asking his wife for permission to keep cheating on her—only to ditch her anyway—certainly is a mark of his character. It's just not the mark Rush and his "friend" think it is.
(h/t Think Progress)