The South Carolina primary ended the Thursday before the voting, at around 8:05 p.m. That’s when Newt Gingrich stopped berating CNN’s John King for asking him about his ex-wife Marianne’s allegation that he wanted an “open marriage.” Newt’s reply was a virtuoso display of bluff and indignation.
He angrily dismissed Marianne’s account as false, even though the balance of evidence suggests it’s true. Whether he explicitly told Marianne he wanted an open marriage or not, he had operationally pried open their marriage through years of unfaithfulness. He summoned dubious evidence in his defense, saying all their mutual friends knew Marianne’s charge was untrue, although there could have been no witnesses to a private conversation. But his outraged forcefulness carried the day. At the end of a debate he must have known he had decisively won, he congratulated King on his fine moderating — as if his volcanic outburst had been for show.
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