News / USA

Staff Walkout Puts Gingrich US Presidential Bid in Jeopardy

Republican presidential hopeful, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, center, prepares to sign the Strong America Now pledge, while touring C&M Machine Products in Hudson, New Hampshire, June 8, 2011.
Republican presidential hopeful, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, center, prepares to sign the Strong America Now pledge, while touring C&M Machine Products in Hudson, New Hampshire, June 8, 2011.

Multimedia

Audio

Former U.S. House speaker Newt Gingrich says he will continue his quest for the Republican Party's presidential nomination despite a mass walkout of key campaign staff.  The staff departure is the latest political setback for Gingrich, who began the campaign as one of the best known Republican contenders for the White House next year.

More than a dozen Gingrich campaign aides quit as a group this week, including his campaign manager, chief spokesman and key staff aides in the important early presidential contest states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Spokesman Rick Tyler cited differences over the direction of the campaign and questions about Gingrich's commitment to making a serious run at the nomination.  The staff departures came shortly after Gingrich and his wife returned from a cruise vacation in Greece.

Gingrich told reporters Friday there were differences over campaign strategy, but he vowed to pursue the Republican nomination in new and dynamic ways in the weeks ahead.

"We had a strategic disagreement about how to run a campaign like that because there have been very few campaigns that are solutions-oriented and that are oriented to every single American," Gingrich said.

Political experts say the mass staff defections are a serious blow to the Gingrich campaign, which has had numerous stumbles from the beginning.

Darrell West is a political analyst with the Brookings Institution in Washington

"To have the entire leadership of a campaign walk out of a door simultaneously this early in a campaign is really unprecedented, so it's really damaging to Mr. Gingrich," West noted.

Gingrich began his presidential campaign as one of the better known Republican contenders because of his tenure as U.S. House speaker in the 1990s and his political battles with then President Bill Clinton.

But after he launched his campaign earlier this year, Gingrich quickly angered conservatives when he criticized a Republican congressional proposal to revamp the popular government health care program for the elderly known as Medicare.

Two of the Gingrich aides who quit previously worked for Texas Governor Rick Perry.  Perry is a favorite with conservative activists within the Republican Party and after initially saying he wasn't interested in joining the presidential race, now says he is reconsidering.

The turmoil in the Gingrich campaign comes on the heels of new public opinion polls that suggest former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney remains the man to beat in the Republican presidential field.

Some conservatives worry that Romney is too much of a moderate and that has spurred several conservative contenders to get into the race.  They include former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty and Georgia businessman Herman Cain, the only African-American candidate and a favorite of Tea Party activists.

Washington based political analyst Stuart Rothenberg is a guest on VOA's Encounter program.

"And so all these candidates are going to have to try to figure out who becomes the alternative to Mitt Romney because he is so well known and has won a race before and has resources and organization, and I think we are going to have a wide open race here," Rothenberg said.

The Republican presidential contenders hold their first major debate Monday in the northeastern state of New Hampshire, which will hold the first presidential primary early next year.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches 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.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid