A trip down memory lane with Newt Gingrich

A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE WITH NEWT GINGRICH…. As tempting as it is to simply ignore the odd tirades of the disgraced former House Speaker, this latest gem from Newt Gingrich strikes me as special.

The former speaker of the House and possible 2012 presidential hopeful said Monday that some people on the left jumped too quickly to conclusions about accused gunman Jared Lee Loughner.

“[P]eople who would immediately scream about ethnic profiling, people who on the left have every possible incentive to never allow anyone to draw conclusions, suddenly say things that are just factually untrue,” Gingrich said on Chicago’s WLS radio station.

“There’s no evidence that I know of that this person was anything except nuts,” he said, later adding, “This person was apparently by any reasonable standard deranged.”

If anything, Gingrich hinted, Loughner might be left-leaning.

Putting aside the madman’s incoherent ideology, it’s fascinating to see Gingrich chastise those who would dare rush to “draw conclusions” in the wake of a tragedy, making claims that are “factually untrue.”

Indeed, let’s take a quick stroll down memory lane with ol’ Newt.

In 1994, just a few days before the midterm elections, a deranged woman named Susan Smith drowned her two young sons. Gingrich, at the time, made infanticide a campaign issue and publicly equated Smith’s murders with the values of the Democratic Party. Gingrich told the AP, “The mother killing her two children in South Carolina vividly reminds every American how sick the society is getting and how much we have to have change. I think people want to change and the only way you get change is to vote Republican.”

Five years later, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold killed 13 people at Columbine High School. Gingrich insisted that American “elites” bore responsibility for the massacre. “I want to say to the elite of this country — the elite news media, the liberal academic elite, the liberal political elite: I accuse you in Littleton … of being afraid to talk about the mess you have made,” Gingrich said, “and being afraid to take responsibility for things you have done, and instead foisting upon the rest of us pathetic banalities because you don’t have the courage to look at the world you have created.”

In 2007, Seung-Hui Cho shot and killed 32 people at Virginia Tech. In response, Gingrich blamed liberals for supporting “situation ethics,” adding, “Yes, I think the fact is, if you look at the amount of violence we have in games that young people play at 7, 8, 10, 12, 15 years of age, if you look at the dehumanization, if you look at the fact that we refuse to say that we are, in fact, endowed by our creator, that our rights come from God, that if you kill somebody, you’re committing an act of evil.” Gingrich, explaining the VT tragedy, went on to condemn Halloween costumes and the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance law.

Sure, Newt, tell us again how awful it is for political figures to rush to “draw conclusions” in the wake of a tragedy.