Newt Gingrich Joins Rick Lazio in Anti-Mosque Crusade

Newt Gingrich weighed in on the Ground Zero mosque debate on NY1 last night and the ex-congressman-turned-Republican philosopher who still thinks of himself as presidential timber gave us a nice taste of his current world view:

"This is a political act designed to establish a 13-story building two blocks from the World Trade Center for the purpose of saying worldwide, we're winning, the Americans are losing, and they're too dumb to even know they're in a war."

Gingrich also picked up Republican gubernatorial wannabe Rick Lazio's only campaign platform so far, demanding that Andrew Cuomo should demand that mosque builders (it's actually an Islamic center, as the Times' Clyde Haberman properly re-emphasizes today) explain where the $100 million needed to build the center is coming from. Problem is, there is no construction funding yet, as Cuomo's office has repeatedly pointed out. But that doesn't mean the GOP's top thinkers can't join ranks with Tea Party loons to keep whipping up a fury on a nonexistent issue.

Since I wrote about the mosque debate last week, the yahoos on the right have been busy tapping away at their keyboards, proving again their unchallenged dominance in the field of digital hate-mail. Leftists, however, take their gripes straight to the streets. Yesterday, veteran anti-fascist battler Gary Phaneuf, who was booted from this month's Landmarks commission hearing for repeatedly heckling anti-mosque speakers, was outside the Voice's offices, scribbling on the sidewalk with a big chunk of chalk about my "despicable" equation of him with the anti-Muslim racists. Memo to Gary: No such political equation was intended. Only a certain commonality in the loon factor between extreme left and right.

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