News / USA

Gingrich Brings Strengths, Weaknesses to US Presidential Nomination Bid

Voters in the United States will begin the process of choosing the next president January 3rd in the state of Iowa, where Republicans will gather in groups and vote for candidates running for their party’s nomination.  One of the leading contenders is Newt Gingrich.

For decades Newt Gingrich has been one of America’s best known Republican politicians and now, at the age of 68, he wants the nation’s top job. “I am announcing my candidacy for president of the United States,” he announced.

Gingrich says he has the best chance among Republicans of beating the incumbent.  “Barack Obama will not have a leg to stand on in trying to defend a record that is terrible and an ideology that is radical,” he stated.

Gingrich burst on the national political scene when he led Republicans to success in the 1994 congressional election, ending 40 years of majority rule by the Democratic Party.

He was rewarded by being elected Speaker of the House.

A self-described revolutionary, he is known for coming up with big ideas to solve America’s problems.

“The energy and the revolutionary character are the strength, but there are some doubts as to whether he will be a stable, solid candidate who will withstand a long campaign because of those same traits,” Political scientist John Fortier said.

Early in his campaign Gingrich had to answer questions about a high flying lifestyle, including millions of dollars in private jet travel.

That includes a million-dollar home outside of Washington and expensive jewelry from Tiffany’s for his wife.

A luxury cruise through the Greek Isles during the campaign led much of his senior staff to resign, and his campaign plunged into debt.

“Newt Gingrich is a wonderful off-the-cuff [impromptu] guy.  He is a horrible political organizer and does not have any [campaign] money," explained Professor Allan Lichtman of American University.  

Gingrich has also had to deal with questions about his personal life.

He has been married three times and has acknowledged having extramarital affairs.

“In my case I have said up-front openly I have made mistakes at times," Gingrich acknowledges. "I have had to go to God for forgiveness.  I have had to seek reconciliation.”  

In early December, Gingrich had a strong lead in opinion polls, but that advantage eroded recently following a furious barrage of negative ads from his opponents.

Ron Paul Campaign Commercial: “Newt Gingrich, this guy hasn’t got skeletons in his closet; he’s got a whole graveyard in there.”

Through it all, Gingrich has pledged to remain positive.

Gingrich Campaign Commercial: “These are challenging and important times for America. We want and deserve solutions. Others seem to be more focused on attacks rather than moving the country forward.”

Republican voters have changed their minds repeatedly in the early months of the campaign.

As Gingrich heads to the first contest in Iowa, two-thirds of likely voters in a CBS News survey say they are still willing to change their minds. 

You May Like

Multimedia Social Media Documenting, Not Driving, Hong Kong Protests

Unlike in Arab Spring uprisings, pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong aren't relying on Twitter and Facebook to organize, but social media still plays a role More

Analysis: Occupy Central Not Exactly Hong Kong’s Tiananmen

VOA's former Hong Kong, Beijing correspondent compares and contrasts 1989 Tiananmen Square protest with what is now happening in Hong Kong More

Bambari Hospital a Lone Place of Help in Violence-Plagued CAR

Only establishment still functioning in CAR's second city is main hospital More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plainsi
X
October 01, 2014 10:45 AM
It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video The Legacy of Jimmy Carter: The Preacher from Plains

It is common in the United States to see tourists flock to sites associated with America's presidents. Some are privately owned and others are run by the National Park Service or the National Archives -- but most have helped draw business and people into the towns and cities where they are located. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there is one particular presidential hometown that is unique in what it has to offer those who make the trip.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Draw New Supporters on National Holiday

On the 65th anniversary of the founding of Communist China, Hong Kong protesters are hoping to stage the largest pro-democracy demonstration since the 1989 Tiananmen protests. VOA's Brian Padden visited one of the protest sites mid-day, when the atmosphere was calm and where the supporters were enthusiastic about joining what they are calling the umbrella revolution.
Video

Video India's PM Continues First US Visit

India's prime minister is on his first visit to Washington, to strengthen political and economic ties between the world's oldest and the world biggest democracies. He came to the U.S. capital from New York, the first stop on his five-day visit to the country that denied him an entry visa in the past. From Washington, Zlatica Hoke reports Modi seemed most focused on attracting foreign investment and trade to increase job opportunities for his people.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid