September 13th, 2010
08:27 PM ET
8 years ago

Plouffe on Gingrich: 'Sad and reprehensible'

(CNN) - The architect of President Obama's 2008 presidential campaign Monday sharply criticized remarks made by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich over the weekend that President Obama follows a "Kenyan, anti-colonial" worldview.

"Two words that come to mind are 'sad' and 'reprehensible,'" David Plouffe told CNN's John King on John King USA.

"It makes me think . he's probably pretty sure he's going to run for president," Plouffe added, suggesting Gingrich may have been trying to appease the most conservative elements of the Republican Party.

Gingrich has recently made a number of trips to earlier primary states, fueling speculation that a 2012 bid for the Republican presidential nomination is on his mind.

The former House speaker made the comments in an interview with the National Review that was published over the weekend on their website.

"This is a person who is fundamentally out of touch with how the world works, who happened to have played a wonderful con, as a result of which he is now president," he said, adding later "I think he worked very hard at being a person who is normal, reasonable, moderate, bipartisan, transparent, accommodating – none of which was true. In the Alinksy tradition, he was being the person he needed to be in order to achieve the position he needed to achieve...He was authentically dishonest."

"What if [Obama] is so outside our comprehension, that only if you understand Kenyan, anti-colonial behavior, can you begin to piece together [his actions]?" he also said. "That is the most accurate, predictive model for his behavior."

Gingrich said he was basing his comments on a recent column in Forbes Magazine by Dinesh D'Souza that concludes the president's worldview was significantly shaped by that of his Kenyan-born father.

Plouffe said Gingrich is "clearly a very intelligent person" who he sensed, while in Congress, acted based on principle. But his comments, Plouffe added, "are really not the Newt Gingrich I think a lot of us remembered."

Filed under: David Plouffe • JKUSA • John King USA • Newt Gingrich • President Obama
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. Olivia Knoxville

    Newt Gingrich is a loser and bitter man who wants to president. What can this man offer this country? Probably, a continuation of Bush's failed polices.

    September 13, 2010 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  2. Steve

    Yeah... And Newt Gingrich would tell you that he himself was a cross dressing, female, Eskimo that breathed fire through his backside, if he thought the you would follow him, take him seriously, and vote for him. He really needs professional help... As do those that ACTUALLY take him seriously, or worse yet, give him money and encourage him...

    September 13, 2010 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  3. Clwyd

    Newt is one of those know nothing Party of No candidates speaking from republican ignorance and the right wing nut case mentality! His words are the scum of the party! Along with Rand, Pathetic Palin, Angle and others!

    September 13, 2010 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  4. Little Tommy

    Best thing that could ever, ever happen to the Dems would be a Gingrich presidential bid. To ice the whole thing, make Palin your running mate. Perfect!

    September 13, 2010 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  5. Keith in Austin

    Newt is right! Like Bozo, Plouffe is full of fluff! Just a bunch of rhetoric will minimal substance! Where's my teleprompter?

    September 13, 2010 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  6. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Gingrich doesn't have anything left, his morals left him long ago when he became a three time adultress and liar. He's trying to "pin a tail" on the donkey but he's making an A of himself and forget him going through a "vetting" process because Americans will find out more than they want to know about this scumb bag.

    September 13, 2010 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  7. Paul Ernest Show

    It's either that Newt , finally feels free to show his bigotry and remind his fellow GOP where their hearts should always belong, or old age is doing an ugly number on his once wise brain. Either way, he owes immigrants and sons and daughter's of immigrants, a serious apology. Regarding his presidential ambition, he should abandon it completely. This kind of divisive, extremism should not ever be welcomed in this new age of America.

    September 13, 2010 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  8. Vicki

    I guess you assume most people don't go out and research issues and find out the truth. Maybe you need better research people. Whitehouse monkey, Gibbs stated: "I don't even have – quite frankly – the slightest idea what he's talking about," an amused Gibbs told ABC News Monday morning. "I think Newt Gingrich knows that he's trying to appeal to the fringe of people that don't believe the president was born in this country."

    Although Gingrich comes up with many of his own original ideas, you can thank Dinesh D'Souza with the original statement you are referring to. This is where you lose credibility with Democrats. I'd like to find a reason to believe, but lying isn't going to do it.

    September 13, 2010 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  9. the real ib

    he's right but the words fit Obama not Gingrich.

    September 13, 2010 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  10. Kate

    These nuts get more unbelievable every day. Sadly, a sizeable number of dupes swallow this stuff. Makes me worry about my country. You're the con man, Mr. Gingrich.

    September 13, 2010 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  11. evelin

    There are some very hateful people in the GOP !

    September 13, 2010 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  12. Sue

    The whole republican party is SAD and REPREHENSIBLE!!!!

    September 13, 2010 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  13. JonDie

    "Sad and reprehensible?" That's being generous when describing Herr Gingrich.

    September 13, 2010 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  14. jim

    What is sad is this guy's defense of Obama.? Obama is moving this country toward socialism.The governments takeover of the student loan program is an example.The goverment's healthcare madate to force people to buy healthcare is another example.The government telling Goldman Sachs how much they can pay their employees is another example.The government telling GM what kind of cars they can build is another.The financial regulation bill that no longer requires the SEC to respond to inquiries under the Freedom of Information Act.

    September 13, 2010 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  15. Marcus

    Just to show how out of touch with reality Gingrich is, Barack Obama (the father) believed in freedom and self-determination, he went to jail and was tortured for that but kept those beliefs (albeit in a more skeptic way as before the jail time), which basically means that, if Barack Hussein Obama does follow his father's points of view, then he believes in freedom and self-determination (aka NO ONE RULES ON ANY COUNTRY EXCEPT THE POPULATION OF THIS COUNTRY).
    Is that so bad as a belief?

    September 13, 2010 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  16. Vic in VA

    You're wrong, Plouffe. Gingrich is exactly as we remember him: evil, vicious, and just plain mean.

    September 13, 2010 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  17. jeff

    the more wacko they get the better the right likes it ?

    September 13, 2010 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  18. George Guadiane - Austerlitz, NY

    Newt ("Say Anything") Gingrich is the new leader of the "Tin Foil Hat Coalition."

    September 13, 2010 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  19. IF

    I fail to see the meaning of the comparison... (if any is expected). The United States are a former British colony, like Kenya, so it can't be that... Can it be that somehow anti-colonial feelings are worse coming from a predominantly black country than from a predominantly white country? Surely not... maybe somebody should ask Newt what he actually meant, because as it stands it does look as if he's having trouble not referring to president Obama as "boy" which would be so very ludricrous considering that Obama is so vastly his intelectual superior.

    September 13, 2010 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  20. Voice of Reason

    Newt is qualified to run for chapter president of Loony-Tunes Anonymous, and that's about it.

    Anyone out there thinking about supporting this chump? OK fine lets set something straight first. The comment about Kenya – that means one thing and one thing only: More Birther nonsense. That leaves one of two conclusions:

    Either Newt really believes all the 'birther' nonsense, in which case he's as deluded a fruitcake as Sarah Palin and Orly Taviz – OR – He is saying this sort of thing as code-speak to all the deusionals out there, but he doesnt really believe it. In other words he's USING people's ignorance to his personal advantage to grab for power.

    **NOT** the sort of guy you want to have in the white house either way.

    September 13, 2010 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  21. normajean

    With a very unsavory reputation, this sad spectre of a man is once again forcing his questionable,persona on the American public. He would like to be president which might be nice for him in his declining years but could be a major travesty for out country. I believe his lifestyle is apparent to most voters and would discourage them from granting him the privilege of this office, which simply put shows the intellegence of the people. He is not presidential material in any way.!!!

    September 13, 2010 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  22. Belmundo

    The only objective of people like Gingrich is to do whatever they can to delegitimize president Obama, even if they have to devide or destroy the country for that. Everything that president Obama is doing, he campained on it, and I thought that why we've chosen him over McCain. It is very sad that hear comments like that about the president.

    September 13, 2010 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  23. USN

    Please keep talking libs , Please please , show yourselfs, Thank you . Keep writing your poison , it speaks more then you know , thank you!

    September 13, 2010 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  24. john

    Now the right will treat Gingrich as a hero, just as they did Joe Wilson, just as they did Preston Brooks. And American opinion will never punish Gingrich, no matter what ugly or stupid things he does.

    September 13, 2010 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  25. joseph

    Newt Gingrich view is a very distorted man. The man who once was the speaker of the house goes low to suggest that if you are not anglo saxon and have a Kenyan father than you must of be off a lower intelligence level and have a world view that is inferior to anglo saxon / conservative america.
    Every American and the world should call him out and condemn him. Newt Gingrich is NOT going to be president and leader of the free world. SHAME ON YOU NEWT.

    Port Moresby,
    Papua New Guinea.

    September 13, 2010 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
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