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Newt Gingrich will officially quit the 2012 presidential race on Wednesday, reports CNN. Previous reports had said Gingrich was likely to exit Tuesday but the former speaker told the Daily Caller he would leave the race “probably about Wednesday” and would endorse Mitt Romney. Now campaign sources are confirming that May 2 will finally be the day.
Fellow Republicans are certainly not happy with Gingrich’s long goodbye. The Hill talks to several lawmakers who (anonymously) say the former House speaker may have cost himself a speaking slot at the Convention, not to mention a leadership role in the party, for his refusal to leave the race even after he suffered huge defeats in five primaries Tuesday.
“He’s the kid that kicked everybody else off the monkey bars and nobody wants to play with him,” one lawmaker said. “I think he really risks any role—not just in the convention, but in the next administration.”
It’s not just that he dragged out his candidacy, but also the way in which many Republicans think he was only interested in himself rather than the party throughout the campaign. In a scathing piece, Bloomberg’s Albert Hunt writes that Gingrich always thought that if he didn’t win the White House, the campaign would help him gain influence. Instead all it did was give lots of ammunition to his critics, and material for comedians. “He seemed more intent on creating a cult than a campaign,” writes Hunt. “He failed at both.”