Weigel

Newt Gingrich’s Campaign Staffers Embrace Radical Change

The AP breaks the news:

Gingrich press spokesman Rick Tyler told AP that he’s resigned along with campaign manager Rob Johnson, senior strategists and aides in key early primary states.

Johnson came to the Gingrich campaign in March, leaving the office of Gov. Rick Perry. Dave Carney, also quitting today, also worked for Perry. A couple of months ago, when these hires were made, Perry was ruling out a presidential campaign. He’s no longer so definitive about that. Just as important: Steve Deace says Gingrich is losing staff in Iowa – or I should say continuing to lose staff, because the bleeding started on June 3.

We can all agree that Gingrich’s campaign didn’t start off well. He spent his entire launch week explaining why a nuts-and-bolts political critique of Paul Ryan’s budget strategy was not necessarily a critique of what Ryan was doing. There were voices in the conservative elite who forgave him. There were fewer voters who did so. That plus Gingrich’s decision to go on vacation for two weeks probably precipitated this.

It’s now time for someone to point out that Ronald Reagan ALSO had to lose key campaign staffers before he won the 1980 nomination.

UPDATE: Newt surfaces on Facebook:

I am committed to running the substantive, solutions-oriented campaign I set out to run earlier this spring. The campaign begins anew Sunday in Los Angeles.

UPDATE II: Jennifer Jacobs talks to Craig Schoenfeld , Gingrich’s Iowa ED, confirming the news there.

“I’ve seen the schedule for June and July going into the straw poll. It’s clear there wasn’t a path to success,” Schoenfeld said.

So the official explanation for the implosion is disorganization? Makes sense. But Gingrich’s inciting problem was crossing Ryan.

UPDATE III: I talked briefly to a source close to the Gingrich organization, and got the sense that Gingrich’s two week campaign pause really was a problem, just not the problem.

“Everybody knew about the vacation and advised against it and I think it pissed some people off,” said the source. “I don’t know how he realistically moves forward after this. That organization took months to build.”