Romney certainly appears Desparate Last Night...and below are some of the clarifications that show that Romney was off base...
Romney and His Attacks Discredited in NBC Debate
Desperate to save his floundering campaign, Mitt Romney leveled four false charges during tonight's NBC Debate. For answers to these dishonest attacks, go to www.newt.org/answers.
Lobbying – Newt has never engaged in lobbying, period. Newt made a decision after resigning that he would never be a lobbyist so that nobody would ever question the genuine nature of his advice and perspectives.
Relationship with Freddie Mac
Recent reporting from Bloomberg News on the Gingrich Group’s consulting services for Freddie Mac confirms that Gingrich and his firm were not paid to lobby and that Gingrich never acted as an advocate to stop any legislation or regulation affecting Freddie Mac.
After leaving public office, Newt Gingrich founded a number of very successful small businesses. One of these small businesses, a consulting firm called The Gingrich Group, offered strategic advice on a wide variety of topics to a very wide range of clients. One of these clients was Freddie Mac. At no time did Gingrich lobby for Freddie Mac, or for any client, and neither did anyone in Gingrich’s firm. This prohibition against lobbying was made clear to all Gingrich Group clients. Nor did Gingrich ever advocate against pending legislation affecting Freddie Mac, as some articles have incorrectly alleged. In fact, recent reporting from Bloomberg News on the Gingrich Group’s consulting services for Freddie Mac confirms that Gingrich and his firm were not paid to lobby and that Gingrich never acted as an advocate to stop any legislation or regulation affecting Freddie Mac.
Furthermore, as the New York Times documents, Newt urged House Republicans to vote against the bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
Newt is in favor of efforts to increase home ownership in America but as a conservative believes they must be within a context of learning how to budget and save in a responsible way, the opposite of the lending practices that led to the financial crisis. You can watch a video from March 2008 of Newt warning about the danger of politicized decision making in the housing crisis here.
As part of Newt’s Jobs and Prosperity Plan, Newt advocates breaking up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and moving their smaller successors off of government guarantees and into the free market.Ethics Investigation
In 1999, after a 3 ½ year investigation, the Internal Revenue Service (under President Bill Clinton) concluded that Gingrich did not violate any tax laws, leading renowned CNN Investigative Reporter Brooks Jackson to remark on air “it turns out [Gingrich] was right and those who accused him of tax fraud were wrong.”
Eighty four politically motivated ethics charges were filed against Newt when he was Speaker of the House regarding the use of tax exempt funds for a college course he taught titled “Renewing American Civilization.” Eighty-three of the eighty-four charges were found to be without merit and dropped. The remaining charge had to do with contradictory documents prepared by Newt’s lawyer supplied during the course of the investigation. Newt took responsibility for the error and agreed to reimburse the committee the cost of the investigation into that discrepancy. In 1999, after a 3 ½ year investigation, the Internal Revenue Service (under President Bill Clinton, nonetheless) concluded that Gingrich did not violate any tax laws, leading renowned CNN Investigative Reporter Brooks Jackson to remark on air “it turns out [Gingrich] was right and those who accused him of tax fraud were wrong.”
Cap and Trade
Newt does not believe there is a settled scientific conclusion about whether industrial development has dramatically contributed to a warming of the atmosphere.
Newt absolutely opposes “cap and trade” as well as any system of taxing carbon emissions. He testified before Congress against it in 2009 and led a grassroots effort while the Chairman of American Solutions to block its passage in the House and Senate.
Newt believes that cap and trade would kill hundreds of thousands of American jobs, cause electricity and fuel prices to skyrocket, and make America poorer. In contrast, Gingrich believes the best way to protect the environment is through markets, incentives, and entrepreneurs, who quite often are deploying innovative new technologies.
As for the question of whether industrial development has dramatically contributed to a warming of the atmosphere, Newt has noted there is no settled scientific conclusion. Many scientists believe it is the case. Others do not. But this unsettled scientific question has nothing to do with the best approach to protecting our environment, which is always markets, incentives, and entrepreneurs creating better and more efficient products and services.
Paul Ryan (and the House GOP’s) Medicare Plan
Like Ryan and the House GOP, Newt supports a premium support model for Medicare. However, he wants seniors to have the choice to opt into the new system or to stay in traditional Medicare.
Newt agrees wholeheartedly with Rep. Ryan that we must give our seniors more choices than the current one-size-fits-all Medicare model. Both concur that creating the opportunity for seniors to buy private insurance is the key to both improving care and lowering costs.
The one key difference is that under Newt’s plan, as outlined in his 21st Century Contract with America, seniors will also have the choice to stay in the current Medicare system or choose a private insurance plan with support from the government to pay the premiums. The other difference is that Newt believes that seniors should have this option starting next year, not in ten years.
Q: So why did Newt use the term “right wing social engineering” on Meet the Press when discussing these proposed changes to Medicare?
Gingrich is opposed to any political party imposing dramatic change against the consent of the governed. Afterwards, Newt quickly admitted that his choice of words was too extreme, and he apologized to Congressman Ryan shortly thereafter.
In response to the host’s hypothetical question of whether Republicans should change Medicare even if there is public opposition, Gingrich’s response was no you should not. One of Newt’s basic governing philosophies is that government should offer a better alternative to existing entitlement programs that seniors can freely choose. Gingrich is opposed to any political party imposing dramatic change against the consent of the governed. Afterwards, Newt quickly admitted that his choice of words was too extreme, and he apologized to Congressman Ryan shortly thereafter. Newt regards Paul Ryan as one of the biggest innovators in Washington, D.C. and he deeply admires the seriousness and boldness of his historic Path to Prosperity budget.