NEWT GINGRICH'S WORLD

HOW ONE MAN CHANGED THE WAY WASHINGTON SEES REALITY

LEADERS MAKE THINGS POSSIBLE. EXCEPTIONAL LEADERS make them inevitable. Newt Gingrich belongs in the category of the exceptional. All year--ruthlessly, brilliantly, obnoxiously--he worked at hammering together inevitabilities: a balanced federal budget, for one. Not so long ago, the idea of a balanced budget was a marginal, we'll-get-to-it-someday priority. Other urgent work needed doing: the Clintons' health-care program, for example, which would have installed elaborate new bureaucratic machinery. Today, because of Newt Gingrich, the question is not whether a balanced-budget plan will come to pass but when.

Gingrich has changed the center of gravity. From Franklin Roosevelt onward, Americans came to accept...

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