Newt Gingrich's justification for his affairs is a classic:
"There's no question at times in my life, partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked too hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate."
In other words, he went after the stray poontang not for the usual reasons, but because he suffered from an excess of patriotism and work ethic.
The general rule is, the lamer the excuse, the more narcissistic the personality. And no one is more narcissistic than a sociopath.
But Gingrich still looks as if he could be the Republican nominee. If the lameness of that excuse hasn't stopped him, probably nothing will.
It's sort of an Aesop's fable in reverse. Perhaps others could learn from the master, come up with similar justifications, and their careers could move forward the same way. A few suggestions:
For the child-molesting priest:
"Yes, well there's no question that at times in my life, partially driven by my overwhelming love of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I tried too hard to spread His good word, and I might have gotten carried away."
For the greedy Ponzi schemer:
"There's no question that at times, partly because of my love for this great country of ours and its wonderful system of free enterprise, some aspects of my business may have gotten a bit exuberant."
For the corrupt politician:
"There's no question at times in my life, driven partially by my desire to help the people of the great state of New York, I may have worked too hard to please my constituents."
For the big time drug dealer:
"There's no question at times in my life, partially driven by how much I love bringing joy to other people's lives, even if only on a temporary basis, I've worked too hard to make them happy."
For the serial killer:
"There's no question that at times in my life, partially driven by my concerns about the environment and overpopulation, I've worked too hard to restore Mother Earth to her original pristine state."
You too can go far in life if only you can learn to obfuscate like Newt.