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Newtstalgia: The 12 Things We'll Miss Most About Newt Gingrich

He failed to win a single state in his native South tonight, and has no road forward. Frankly, we're going to miss him.

Posted on March 13, 2012, at 10:27 p.m. ET

1. Moon Colony

Gingrich sought to make a return to the moon a campaign issue in Florida. Instead, he may have done real damage to the American space program by turning it into a punch line.

2. Cute Animals

Courtesy of Andrew Kaczynski, the comprehensive set of images of Gingrich with zoo animals. He has always loved zoos.

3. Newt Judges You

Ben Domenech's excellent Tumblr captured the spirit of a prideful candidate and campaign.

4. Debate Moderators

View this video on YouTube

Gingrich thrived when he was being asked tough questions; he wilted when moderators started ignoring him. In South Carolina, he won the debate in the first five minutes with his outraged response to a damaging interview with his ex-wife, Zeke Miller wrote at the time.

5. Child Labor

"You say to somebody, you shouldn't go to work before you're what, 14, 16 years of age, fine," Gingrich began. "You're totally poor. You're in a school that is failing with a teacher that is failing. I've tried for years to have a very simple model. Most of these schools ought to get rid of the unionized janitors, have one master janitor and pay local students to take care of the school. The kids would actually do work, they would have cash, they would have pride in the schools, they'd begin the process of rising."

The proposal met bipartisan ridicule, though Time's Joe Klein made the case that it's not such a bad idea.


It's a meme. And thanks to BuzzFeed's technical wizardry, you can photoshop it on your own head.

7. Lincoln-Douglas Debates

Gingrich proposed seven freewheeling debates in the general election, and said he would force the president to debate him:

I will appear four hours after Obama everywhere he goes for the duration of the campaign, and I will answer each of his speeches...The negative publicity that will get him—in the sense that he'll be constantly running away—and the fact that it gives me the advantage of always being the guy with the answer. I suspect at some point he'll decide it's easier just to agree to debate me.

He did stage one of those debates in New Hampshire with Jon Huntsman last December. It was a lovefest, and a snooze.

8. Food Stamp President

Gingrich has no fear of touching raw racial nerves, and did so with this one, calling Barack Obama "the finest food stamp president in American history."

His point: More Americans are on food stamps than ever before.

9. Kenyan Anti-Colonialist Behavior

What if [Obama] is so outside our comprehension, that only if you understand Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior, can you begin to piece together [his actions]?" Gingrich asked, in floating an outlandish theory of the Democratic president. "That is the most accurate,predictive model for his behavior."

10. Newt's Favorite Words

Grandiose, Frankly, Profound, Fundamental. These words don't always mean what he thinks they mean, but he carries it off.

11. Brad Pitt

Michael Buckner / Getty Images

"In my fantasy life," he told TMZ.

12. Ellis the Elephant

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.