Former House speaker Newt Gingrich is really enjoying his role as the GOP’s potential “Moses.” He has taken on the role of adviser to the congressional GOP leadership, creator of bold new ideas, Republican whip, and general GOP superstar. He frequently uses his platform to launch attacks at President Obama, and is now suggesting that the next role he wants to take on is U.S. president. Gingrich spoke to reporters on Wednesday, before his speech at Randolph-Macon College in Virginia:
“Calista and I will look seriously and we’ll probably get our family totally engaged, including our two grandchildren, probably in January, 2011, Gingrich told reporters during a sit-down interview before last night’s speech.
“We’ll look seriously at whether or not we think its necessary to do it. And if we think it’s necessary we’ll probably do it. And if it isn’t necessary we probably won’t do it.”
Gingrich also predicted that his prodigy, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), will become Speaker of the House someday, saying he “is a great, great leader emerging.” Cantor has said that he talks to Gingrich “every day.”
Ironically, Gingrich — who would be 69 years old in 2012, just a couple years younger than McCain when he ran for president in 2008 — said that he sees the Republican party “moving towards a whole new generation.”
Of course, this flirtation with a presidential bid may be nothing more than a ploy to increase his public stature. After all, when considering whether to run in 2008, Gingrich “joked with FOX News more than a year ago that his flirtation with a White House run was in part to sell books and give lectures, and to focus the debate on his issues.”
In a recent interview with Matt Bai, Gingrich said, “I think I’m closer to Benjamin Franklin than to George Washington. … I’m a contributor to my country and to my times. If it turns out that there’s a moment when it makes sense to run, then I’ll run. But if I end up never being able to run, then it won’t devastate me.”