I was going to do this in the style of “Newt or Evil Dictator” and let people try to figure out if each quote was by Newt or some famous villain in history, but it seems I’ve been beaten to the punch. There’s already a site called Supervillain or Newt? Oh well. I’ll just do this in list form.
Presenting…your possible next President of the United States!
“There is a gay and secular fascism in this country that wants to impose its will on the rest of us.” (2008)
As recently as four years ago, Gingrich compared the gay civil rights movement to authoritarian governments infamous for their mistreatment of citizens. I’m not quite sure where Newt got the idea that the gays are planning a coup, or what exactly that would consist of — The rainbow’d Stars and Stripes! The First Husband! (And it’s not even Bill) — but this is one of the more absurd notions ever uttered by a high profile American politician.
An Onion article from 2004 made fun of ideas like this with the headline “Massachusetts Supreme Court Orders All Citizens to Gay Marry,” but that’s the Onion. This was real, even if it was Gingrich. And don’t get me started on the idea of “secular fascism.” It’s a bit rich for a man like Gingrich to decry secular morals when his own alleged religious principles deserted him back somewhere in his first marriage. That might even be generous.
“What if he [Obama] is so outside our comprehension, that only if you understand Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior, can you begin to piece together [his actions]?” (2010)
One of his more recent gems, here Gingrich both reignites the birther controversy and accuses Obama of “anti-colonial” behavior, which is so off-base it’s ridiculous. He took this idea from a Forbes article by a conservative, Dinesh D’Souza, who argues that Obama’s actions largely stem from his father’s anti-corporate role working for the Kenyan government. The fact that Obama met his father once past infancy seems to not have resonated with D’Souza and Gingrich.
Also problematic in this statement is Gingrich’s apparent belief that colonialism is inherently a good thing, and that resistance to it is grounds for the most condemnatory of statements. We should expect nothing less from such a pompous blowhard, but this aspect of the quote didn’t get enough play in the media at the time he said it.
“Nazis don’t have the right to put up a sign next to the Holocaust Museum in Washington. There is no reason for us to accept a mosque next to the World Trade Center.” (2010)
Ah yes, I was wondering when we were gonna get a Nazi/Hitler quote! I love these. It’s really fitting to compare the most genocidal regime in history to whatever group is in your own personal crosshairs. In this case, it’s Muslims as a whole. Gingrich has proven time and time again that he doesn’t understand other cultures and religions, and this is Exhibit A.
It’s amazing how many Americans seem to downplay the importance of a nuanced understanding of the world in their presidential candidates. That was the main reason I voted for Obama in 2008. That election, the Republicans also had such a candidate in John McCain. In 2012? Ignorance is alarmingly prevalent. We’re seeing that Romney has little grasp on economic realities for poor and lower middle class Americans, and that Gingrich…well, he’s just an idiot.
“This is one of the great tragedies of the Bush administration. The more successful they’ve been at intercepting and stopping bad guys, the less proof there is that we’re in danger…. It’s almost like they should every once in a while have allowed an attack to get through just to remind us.”
I couldn’t believe this when I heard it, but now that Gingrich is a serious candidate for president I’m absolutely stunned he said this and got away with it. I’m actually praying he gets the Republican nomination. He ACTUALLY recommended that Bush should let terrorists attack the U.S.!! A lot of people have forgotten about this quote. Obama’s prep team won’t have.
“I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over the nature of America, by the time they’re my age, they will be in a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists.”
I had to throw another anti-Muslim one in here. Relations between the Muslim world and the West are one of the most important issues this century, and we have here a candidate who envisions a battle between good Christians and bad Muslims for supremacy of the country. First, Islamic fundamentalists have barely any foothold on our country. Second, there’s absolutely no reason to believe that just because America’s becoming more secular there will be a surge of such fundamentalism.
It’s fear-mongering, plain and simple. We’ve already had a presidential administration this century which engaged in widespread public manipulation. Look what happened there. And based on his history, Gingrich would be a hundred times more dangerous in the White House than Bush and company.