Newt Gingrich Let His Own Kids Become Charity Cases

newt gingrichI'm generally of the camp that believes a politician's personal life has little to no bearing on whether or not he can be a good leader. Meaning, I don't really care whether or not my president had an affair with an intern or sneaks cigarettes in the Oval Office, as long as he or she is smart, fair, responsible and honest (about things like taxes and war, not sex and smoking). But the latest dirt on Newt Gingrich is basically proof that Gingrich is NOT fair, responsible, or honest. (The jury is still out on "smart.")

According to recently released divorce documents from Gingrich's split with first wife Jackie Battley, the Republican was more than just a crappy husband. He was also allegedly a deadbeat dad!

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The papers filed by Gingrich's then-wife state:

Despite repeated notice to plaintiff and requests by defendant, plaintiff has failed and refused to voluntarily provide reasonable support sufficient to include payment of usual and normal living expenses, including drugs, water, sewage, garbage, gas, electric and telephone service for defendant and the minor children ... As a result, many of such accounts are two or three months past due with notices of intent to cut off service and gas and electricity.

Nice, really nice. He was so caught up in his political career -- or pursuit of second wife Callista, perhaps -- that he couldn't be bothered to make sure his kids had electricity? Apparently things got so desperate for the family that the church collected donations to help pay the bills until a judge finally ordered Gingrich to make monthly payments.

Financially neglecting to support his own flesh and blood is, to me, a "personal" issue that is extremely relevant to Gingrich's presidential potential. There's a tremendous difference between a politician indulging a vice and a man failing to take care of his family. Is Gingrich really going to care about the countless Americans affected by the recession when he allowed his children to literally become charity cases?

Does this news change your opinion of Newt Gingrich?

 

Image via Gage Skidmore/Flickr

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