Newt Gingrich visited around 800 Tea Party members in Staten Island yesterday, and earned the, um, coveted endorsement of former SI congressman Vito Fossella. It's an excellent strategy in case Newt needs to swap out his "Campaign Wife" with a "Governing Wife," and his stock continues to rise among the GOP electorate. But is he peaking too early?

According to two reliable new polls, Gingrich has an eight-point lead over his two closest rivals in Iowa, and the exit of Herman Cain clears the path for an easier fight for the nomination. Lest Newt take another victory cruise in Greece, he should remember the fate of Rudy Giuliani, who led the field by as many as 12 points in the fall of 2007. “One moment, we were sitting pretty and the next—bang —we were done,” a former Giuliani staffer tells the Daily News.

That "bang" can perhaps be attributed to Giuliani's primary strategy of ignoring every state but Florida. And like a horse race, you often don't want to bet on the first one out of the gate. “What matters is being ahead at the right moment,” political scholar Larry Sabato says. "It is sometimes better to be marginally behind, though very competitive, and time a surge for the final days."

Another factor that should worry Newt is that Politico managed to find SIX "Romney die-hards, a species of political sasquatch whose existence is widely doubted." Still, the photographs of them were really grainy and all of them were located in Western Canada.