• Newt Gingrich Offers Historical Perspective on Failure to Qualify for Virginia Ballot

    Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Jon Huntsman and Rick Santorum may still be viable candidates for the Republican nomination, but they won't be appearing on the March 6th Virginia primary ballot.

    The Republican Party of Virginia announced that neither Gingrich nor Perry obtained signatures from 10,000 registered voters, including 400 from each of the state's 11 congressional districts, while other candidates failed to meet the deadline for submitting petitions.

    As a historian, Gingrich was uniquely qualified to place the Virginia Republican Party's remarkably-easy-to-foresee sneak attack in perspective. His national campaign director Michael Krull explained

    By now you've likely heard that our effort to gain access to the primary ballot in Virginia was not successful. This was not due to a lack of effort by our volunteers, but the cumbersome process in Virginia…Newt and I agreed that the analogy is December 1941: We have experienced an unexpected set-back, but we will re-group and re-focus with increased determination, commitment and positive action.

    It may be too much to ask presidential campaigns to canvass door to door in an effort to gather signatures, like some kind of Bataan Death March of electoral democracy, but at least this wasn't as traumatic as the time Gingrich's credit line at Tiffany's was revealed. What do you think the kristal in Kristallnacht refers to? And it all pales in comparison to my own personal trauma of missing out on the last piece of pie this Christmas (it was kind of like Bergen-Belsen).

    As for Rick Perry, getting on the ballot requires gathering signatures, checking their validity, and submitting them for inspection. Did anyone really expect him to remember three things?

    Photo by Richard Ellis/Getty Images News/Getty Images

    Tags: Newt Gingrich, Primaries, Rick Perry, Virginia


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