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December 5, 2011

When might media (or GOP opponents) discuss Newt Gingrich's "Right on Crime" positions?

Today's USA Today has this new piece on the GOP presidential campaign headlined "All eyes on Newt Gingrich in GOP race." The piece would be misleading if it were titled "Eyes looking at all of Newt," however, because there has not been yet any mention — let alone any extended examination — of Newt Gingrich's prominent position within the important new "Right on Crime" organization.

Regular readers may recall my emphasis on Gingrich's active and vocal involvement in the Right on Crime Campaign a little more than a year ago, and my excitement when he stated explicitly in a co-authored commentary that the US "can no longer afford business as usual with prisons" and that the "criminal justice system is broken, and conservatives must lead the way in fixing it."  My hope was that, especially as Gingrich announced his interest in the presidency, that Gingrich's role in "Right on Crime" would foster a more dynamic and politically balanced discussion of a number of important crime and justice issues in the presidential campaign.  So far, though, despite Gingrich's rising poll numbers, the "Right on Crime" campaign has not even made a blip on the media radar.  (I have not seen any new media discussion of these matters; this post is meant as a criticism of not just the MSM on this front.)

Regular readers are likely already tired of hearing me whine about the failure of the GOP candidates to engage with any crime and punishment issues on the campaign trail.  But when Bachmann and Cain were flavors of the month, this was more understandable because of a lack of a real record on these issue.  But Gingrich not only has a record, he has made important (and controversial?) comments on these fronts that should be getting at least some media attention as part of Newt-mania.

Perhaps Gingrich's opponents will be the one who see an opportunity here.  I would certainly not put it past Romney or others to try out some old "soft on crime" rhetoric if/when they decide they cannot get other attacks to stick in the weeks ahead.  Sadly, because of the media's failure to cover these important public policy matters, I am almost hoping that they do.

Some recent and older related posts on Gingrich and the modern politics of sentencing issues:

December 5, 2011 at 09:57 AM | Permalink

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