Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign "imploded" this afternoon with a mass resignation of his entire staff—campaign manager and a half-dozen senior advisers, report Politico, the New York Times and the Washington Post.
Among the issues leading to the resignations, according to knowledgeable sources, was the two-week vacation that Gingrich and his wife, Callista, insisted upon taking against the advice of his top political staff. Coming as it did after one of the most disastrous campaign launches in recent memory, it raised questions as to whether Gingrich would be willing to "commit time to the grassroots," said [Rick Tyler, a longtime Gingrich spokesman].
Gingrich had returned earlier this week and visited New Hampshire but remained largely off the campaign trail.
Carney and Johnson are longtime aides to Texas Gov. Rick Perry who has said in recent days that he is contemplating a run for president himself in 2012. The Carney and Johnson resignations will fuel speculation that Perry is moving toward the race.
[Aides]demanded that he spend 90 percent of his time campaigning in three states – Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina – and curtail distractions like screenings of his documentaries. His trip to New Hampshire on Wednesday, for example, was built around promoting a documentary he produced with his wife. Campaign managers were also worried about expenses. In a three-day swing through Iowa last month, Mr. Gingrich spent $40,000 on a chartered Citation 10 jet, the aide said.
Money quote from a key Gingrich strategist who resigned: "The professional team came to the realization that the direction of the campaign they sought and Newt vision for campaign were incompatible."
Newt's "vision for the campaign" was believing he could win the nomination. The staff realized that he could not.