Because it's a Tuesday, it's time for another Republican presidential debate; only this time, the pressure is on Newt Gingrich to see if he can succeed where so many others have failed.
The 2012 primary race has followed a familiar pattern so far. Previously unheralded and little known candidate surges to head of the polls. The media and the public express surprise and amazement. The media and the public then start actually looking at the candidate's background and positions. The spotlight zeros in on the front runner. Another televised debate happens and the front runner implodes on state. Rinse. Repeat.
It happened to Tim Pawlenty, Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry, and then Herman Cain. (Ron Paul and Rick Santorum have always been exactly where they are now.) There are a few differences for Newt Gingrich, however, who now leads Mitt Romney in several polls. One is that he has way more experience on the national stage. He's way more confident and polished when it comes to debating and is unlikely to have a gaffe that involves simple public speaking. Also, his campaign already had an implosion, before it even got started, when most of key staff quit over the summer. Somehow he kept slogging along and is finally getting a serious look.