Newt Gingrich has a hell of a lot of nerve.

The man who wants to be our next president told the press this week that his many episodes of adultery were in fact driven by his work ethic and his love of the United States of America.

To wit: illicit sex is now your patriotic duty. Unless it's gay sex of course, in which case, presumably, it's treasonous.

But what, one wonders, did he tell all of his conquests? To lie back and think of America?

"There's no question at times of my life, partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked far too hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate," this paragon of righteousness brought low by his own country said this week.

"What I can tell you is that when I did things that were wrong, I wasn't trapped in situation ethics, I was doing things that were wrong, and yet, I was doing them," he said. "I found that I felt compelled to seek God's forgiveness. Not God's understanding, but God's forgiveness."

There'll be neither understanding or forgiveness from this epic hypocrite for his fellow gay Americans, of course. His experiences didn't teach him compassion.

Gingrich, for the record, cheated on his first two wives. He informed the first one he was divorcing her when she was recovering from uterine cancer. His second wife had just been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis when he gave her the chop.

This is the man who now says with a straight face that he wants to protect marriage. But haven't his own actions proved a greater threat to marriage than anything his gay neighbors could have dreamed up?

We're at a time when the do as I say not as I do rhetoric of the GOP has reached its nauseating nadir. We're at the moment when hypocrisy boils over and turns into something else: stupidity.

Newt wants to legislate against gay unions. He still wants the United States Constitution to ban them (years after Bush gave up on that quest). He'd do better to take an inventory of his own life.

If marriage is a scared bond between one man and one woman, I have to ask, what does the word "sacred" actually mean to him? Which one of his multiple marriages was the most sacred to him?

How can this man even show his faces in public? God may forgive him, but voters shouldn't.