Is Newt Gingrich having a Jimmy Swaggart moment? On Wednesday, Focus on the Family alerted reporters to an interview with Gingrich that will air tomorrow and Friday on James Dobson's radio show, in which the former House speaker fesses up to "moral failings." According to the press release, which is smartly scant on the juicy details so that we'll have to tune in (or at least Google it), Gingrich tells Dobson that he has "gotten on his knees and sought God's forgiveness" for his personal failings. Sheesh, sounds like a Kleenex moment, too. But it could signal that Newt thinking more seriously about 2008 than he has previously let on. Why? For one thing, there's no major frontrunner among evangelicals in the race for the White House next year-no matter what Mitt Romney's win in the Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll last weekend suggests. But even though voters on the right like Newt and fondly remember his sparring with the Clintons, there's been less than flattering buzz about his personal life, namely his two divorces. (Back in 1998, Newt divorced his wife of 18 years to marry a former House aide with whom he had admitted to having an affair.) Indeed only Rudy Giuliani-also on his third marriage, if you're keeping count-has been bad - mouthed more in that department by Christian conservatives. He's been trying hard to make amends. It's probably no coincidence that Newt's latest book is titled "Rediscovering God In America." Can Gingrich boost his rep among social conservatives by playing the forgiveness card-and would it work for Rudy? Only time will tell, but shedding a few tears and admitting to bad behavior never hurts. Just ask Miss USA. But, then again, maybe Donald Trump is more forgiving than Republican voters.
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