Weigel

Tea Partiers Against Newt

Last night, I caught up with FreedomWorks President Matt Kibbe right after the CEI dinner wrapped. He’d just gotten back from Pennsylvania, where he’d asked a dozen Tea Party groups a series of questions.

“Who stands with Paul Ryan?” said Kibbe. “One hundred percent yes. Who’s pissed at Newt Gingrich? One hundred percent yes. Who wants Mitt Romney to be the next president of the United States? Nobody.”

I filed that away, but then the Gingrich campaign suffered from some kinetic activity today, and Brendan Steinhauser – FreedomWorks’ director of grassroots campaigns – tweeted this.

A Gingrich source suggested to me today that Gingrich’s made-for-The Daily Show vacation was a factor in today’s massacre, but not the only reason for it. Sure enough. The main reason is that Gingrich cannot rebuild bridges with the party’s base.