Gingrich on his “Meet” moment

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich made three campaign-style stops in Iowa today, the final one in Des Moines.  After his speech and the picture posing with members of the crowd, Gingrich answered a few questions from a handful of reporters.  I asked him about the waves he created from his statements on Meet the Press on Sunday. Here is his answer:

AUDIO: 2 min

Here’s the transcript:

“This is one of those things where only after it happens do you begin to think about how to do it. I think if I could do ‘Meet the Press’ over when they ran an 18-year-old clip, I should have said to him, ‘David, where’s the rest of the film?’ and not allowed him to set up a question based on 12 seconds taken totally out of context. I mean, that’s an example of it.

“…And let me say it’s amazing to me how rapidly some people took that whole conversation to imply that somehow I was for ObamaCare.  I mean, I founded the Center for Health Transformation. The best charts taking apart the Obama legislation, you can see them at We produced three charts that cover 118 square feet of wall space, laying out what’s wrong with ObamaCare. I’ve for two years gone around the country making speeches about ObamaCare.  I’ve said over and over, ‘We should repeal it.’

“I mean, for people to go from all of that body of evidence to say, ‘Yeah, but for 25 seconds yesterday I thought you said X,’ that’s beyond gotcha.  I mean, so tomorrow morning in Mason City I will sign — there’s a national repeal pledge. I’m going to sign it tomorrow morning to make unequivocally clear to anybody who doesn’t believe in the first two and a half years of evidence and let’s go beyond that.

“I do think on the Medicare situation I do feel that when you’re dealing with the largest-single-program that affects human beings, and you know that every single American is affected, that you have to be very careful and you have to make sure that every American understands it and that the conversation has been way beyond the normal legislative process.

“All of us on the right got angry at Obama for ramming through ObamaCare and we just need to be a little cautious and make sure that we are very open and that we’re willing to change things, that we’re willing to listen.  It’s not, ‘Go have a good sales campaign.’  It’s, ‘Go share with people what you’re trying to get done.  See what their ideas are.’  We’re entering an age when the challenges are so big that we have to use the Internet, we have to use talk radio and all these other devices to get many people helping us think things through so they get used to the idea that they’re part of the process and it’s not being imposed on them by Washington.”

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.


  1. […] in an interview with the Des Moines Register Monday, Gingrich said he is the victim of “gotcha” […]