Congressman Phil Gingrey (R-GA), who is running for Senate to replace the retiring Saxby Chambliss, is going to have to do some mass hiring today. It appears that his four top campaign staffers decided to resign on Monday. The resigning staff members were consultant Chip Lake, campaign manager John Porter, political director David Allen and political adviser Justin Tomczak.
In comments to The Daily Caller, Lake explained why he and the other staffers decided to leave the campaign:
We hit a crossroads in the campaign, and I just made a decision that it was best for both parties if we went in different directions. And I wish him nothing but the best moving forward, but you know, there was a fundamental disagreement on how to execute the campaign, and those differences over time just became too big of an obstacle for both parties, and at the end of the day I don’t know that he was very comfortable, and I don’t know that we were comfortable, and so we just thought it was best to move in different directions.”
One has to wonder if this relates to Gingrey’s first major TV campaign ad that started running a few days ago. The ad features Gingrey pledging that he will not run for reelection if he cannot get Obamacare repealed. Gingrey also has a campaign website, repealorgohome.com. Apparently, Gingrey’s campaign slogan is ‘Repeal or Go Home’ and is the major issue he will be running on.
Losing his entire campaign staff isn’t the only thing that might prevent Gingrey from making a successful bid for the Senate. His propensity for saying dumb stuff may also bite him in the backside before it is all said and done. Gingrey is already known for coming to the defense of both Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock after they were both defeated in their Senate campaigns. During an Atlanta Chamber of Commerce breakfast that he attended in January, Gingrey made these comments:
[In] Missouri, Todd Akin … was asked by a local news source about rape and he said, ‘Look, in a legitimate rape situation’ — and what he meant by legitimate rape was just look, someone can say, ‘I was raped’: A scared-to-death 15-year-old that becomes impregnated by her boyfriend and then has to tell her parents, that’s pretty tough and might on some occasion say, ‘Hey, I was raped.’ That’s what he meant when he said legitimate rape versus nonlegitimate rape.
I don’t find anything so horrible about that. But then he went on and said that in a situation of rape, of a legitimate rape, a woman’s body has a way of shutting down so the pregnancy would not occur. He’s partly right on that.”
At the same event, he also came to Mourdock’s defense:
Part of the reason the Dems still control the Senate is because of comments made in Missouri by Todd Akin and Indiana by Mourdock were considered a little bit over the top. Mourdock basically said, ‘Look, if there is conception in the aftermath of a rape, that’s still a child, and it’s a child of God, essentially.’ Now, in Indiana, that cost him the election.”
Later on, Gingrey said his comments were “misconstrued” as he was just trying “to provide context”. Another set of comments of Gingrey’s that he has to live down are his complaints about his Congressional salary in relation to what his aides will make years later on K Street. Per aides that witnessed a meeting in September 2013, Gingrey said that his aides “may be 33 years old now and not making a lot of money. But in a few years they can just go to K Street and make $500,000 a year. Meanwhile I’m stuck here making $172,000 a year.” At the time he made those statements, Gingrey’s net worth was estimated at $3 million.
Justin Baragona is the Managing Editor at Politicus Sports as well as Senior Editor at PoliticusUSA. He was a political writer for 411Mania.com before joining PoliticusUSA. Politically, Justin considers himself a liberal but also a realist and pragmatist. Currently, Justin lives in St. Louis, MO and is married. Besides writing, he also runs his own business after spending a number of years in the corporate world. You can follow Justin on Twitter either with his personal handle (@justinbaragona) or the Sports site’s (@PoliticusSports).