Newt Gingrich is cutting back his campaign schedule, will lay off about a third of his cash-strapped campaign’s full-time staff, and has forced out his manager as part of what aides are calling a “big-choice convention” strategy, communications director Joe DeSantis told POLITICO. Michael Krull, a former advance man and a college friend of Callista Gingrich’s who took over the campaign after a staff exodus in June, was replaced last weekend by Vince Haley, who has worked for Gingrich for nine years and currently is deputy campaign manager and policy director. “We’re focusing exclusively on what it’ll take to win what we’re going to be calling a big-choice convention in August,” DeSantis said in a phone interview Tuesday night.
Laying off staff is never, ever a good sign. It means a campaign isn’t winning and isn’t bringing in money. It could also mean that there were a lot of bad decisions about how the campaign was spending its money. But, at minimum, it isn’t a good sign. There’s nothing surprising about the third man in a two man race is heading towards oblivion. It’s just a reminder that the longer Gingrich refuses to read the writing on the wall, the more public benchmarks of failure like this will occur.