Q. How does someone seeking the Republican presidential nomination know he might have stepped in it with the people who will actually vote in the primaries? A. When a position he's taken has the likes of Newsweek/Daily Beast editor Tina Brown suddenly saying she likes him, and calling him a "shining star."
Newt Gingrich might thus be having a "ruh-roh" moment this morning. On today's Morning Joe, Brown repeatedly said "I like Newt" and saddled him with her "shining star". It was Newt's position on immigration, in which he called for a "humane" solution that would find a path to "legality" for illegal immigrants, that won Tina's heart--and may have turned off GOP voters from Iowa to South Carolina. Video after the jump.
Watch Brown heap praise on Newt that--considering the source--he can hardly welcome.
TINA BROWN: It was Newt's night. Newt was a shining star last night.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: Yeah, if you like losing. He's going down.
BROWN: He may be going down, but he was good last night.
SCARBOROUGH: You know what was the biggest shock? Newt Gingrich, who seriously, he can't stand being in front. Because the second he's in first place, he starts looking for the TNT. Really, like, put that, because I want to strap it on. You love Newt now!
BROWN: You know what? I like Newt. I like Newt. I like Newt, I like Newt for the reason that --
SCARBOROUGH: You've got a cover story coming up on Newt --
BROWN: He's craggy, he's got that whole immigration thing.
DAN SENOR: Newt's eyes. There'll be lots of debate about Newt's eyes on the cover of Newsweek.
BROWN: Romney, he just retrofits his entire personality to positions every single time. And at least, in that immigration exchange, Newt just--it was reckless-but I think a little smattering of recklessness actually makes people think this person has a brain, has thoughts.
Cut to clip of Newt making his pitch for a "humane" approach to immigration that will create a path to "legality" for illegal immigrants.
SCARBOROUGH: I mean, that's a Rick Perry moment.
BROWN: Yeah, he strapped on the TNT.
SCARBOROUGH: Major Garrett, he just strapped the same TNT that blew Rick Perry up a couple months ago.
Note: With more praise that Newt could probably do without, Howard Kurtz, writing at Brown's Daily Beast, has an item this morning entitled "Gingrich Seizes the High Ground on Immigration in CNN Presidential Debate."