I am trying to figure out if Newt really is a hypocrite. His two decade long support for a federal individual mandate is well known. It was well-known before he got in the race. It was already well-known when two videos surfaced of him praising Romneycare. It was already well-known when he defended it on Meet The Press early in his campaign. And now we have a video of Gingrich (down below), once again, defending the individual mandate in May 2009 a few brief months before it became socialism. Gingrich has to assume that everyone knows he is full of crap when he pretends like he thinks Obamacare and Romneycare are awful, no?
What Gingrich offers is more important to conservatives than consistency: Gingrich offers rhetoric. Yes, it is rhetoric that doesn't match anything that he currently believes, but it is angry and intense. The logic is not hard to follow. There really are only two explanations for why some in the Republican base think Gingrich is the more conservative option: either they are too stupid to realize that Gingrich contradicts everything that he says or they know and they don't care because his rhetoric channels their irrational anger. If Gingrich really is trying to deceive conservative voters it is only because he believes they represent the first option. And if that is the case, it really shows the great contempt that Gingrich has for his base of supporters as well as the chronic misinformation that the conservative media complex has bestowed upon their audience.
As misinformed as the base may be about so many issues, I have a hard time believing that there are great swaths of Gingrich voters out there who really are in the dark about Gingrich's love for "must carry" health insurance. The more likely explanation is that they simply don't care. As long as Gingrich gives The Others (read establishment, media, Romney, Obama, Democrats, intellectuals, empirical evidence) the what for, the angry mob will continue to overlook his blatant double standards. They feed off of rhetoric, because rhetoric in their minds is the essence of conservatism. Coincidentally, rhetoric also is the essence of talk radio, but never mind that.
So, no, Newt Gingrich may not be a hypocrite because he is not really trying to deceive anybody. He and his supporters know full well what they want.
In a related story, one of the reasons why Gingrich likes Romneycare so much is because it has been largely successful as this new research shows.