eye of newt

John Heilemann on Hardball: Newt Gingrich Is Now Calm and Collected?

On tonight’s Hardball with our own John Heilemann, Chris Matthews pointed out how much fun it can be to watch an angry Newt Gingrich during a debate. Last night’s matchup wasn’t as loud as last week’s in South Carolina, but when Mitt Romney accused Gingrich of being an “influence peddler,” it seemed to get under Gingrich’s skin a bit, although Gingrich did not react as boldly as he had when John King asked him about his ex-wife. Trying to act cool under pressure seemed to be Gingrich’s plan for the night, Heilemann said. “He had decided that he was going to float above Mitt Romney,” Heilemann said. “They knew Romney was going to come in very aggressive and they decided … that Gingrich was not going to be the Gingrich we saw in South Carolina.”

Heilemann on Hardball: Gingrich Is Calm?