Senator Tom Coburn Not a Big Fan of Newt Gingrich, Neither is Rep. Peter King

We currently have a president who is unable to work with Congress. Why are we even considering a guy who won’t be able to work with some in his own party?

Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) was on Fox News Sunday this morning and said that having experienced firsthand Newt’s leadership skills, he is unable to support him in the GOP primary.

“I am not inclined to be a supporter of Newt Gingrich’s having served under him for four years and experienced his leadership. Because I found it lacking often times,” Coburn said on Fox News Sunday. The Oklahoma senator served in the House of Representatives from 1995 to 2001.

“There’s all kind of leaders, leaders that instill confidence and leaders that are somewhat abrupt, leaders that have one standard for the people that they are leading and a different standard for themselves,” he said. “I will have difficulty supporting him for president of the United States.”
Coburn in March said that he was looking for a president that would unite the country and raised questions about Gingrich’s confrontational style.

Senator Coburn was a little bet less blunt than Rep. Peter King (R-NY) in his assessment of the former Speaker.

“It was like Newt would read a book and we’d go off into a different topic,” King said. “He’d go on ‘Meet the Press’ and he’d go off message. If you’re the speaker and you lay out an agenda, or a particular bill, you stay on that until the bill is passed. With Newt, it was hard to get that type of discipline. He’d say something else or come up with a different argument.

“He also has this incredible sense of exaggeration. Like, I don’t know how many times he’ll say, ‘This is the most corrupt act in the history of Western Civilization,’ or ‘the most despicable.’ You can only say that so many times. So to me, I just didn’t see him having the sense of discipline or the sense of direction that’s really needed.”

King said he wasn’t the best person to assess how Gingrich treated his members, since the two sparred often, but he offered his own experience.

“I thought he was condescending,” King said. “I used to see him on the floor, even with his staff, it was like a presidential entourage having to follow him. And ‘I want this done, and I want this done.’ That type of thing.

Ouch! Speaking of “ouch” read George Will’s latest column. You can count him in the anyone-but-Newt camp.