Gingrich campaign t-shirts: Not 'Made in the USA'
July 27th, 2011
08:34 PM ET
7 years ago

Gingrich campaign t-shirts: Not 'Made in the USA'

Atlanta (CNN) –In an uncomfortable moment during a press availability at his presidential campaign headquarters Wednesday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was asked to hold up a "Newt 2012" t-shirt for the cameras. "We asked for t-shirts to be sent to us and they were made in America," an ABC producer said. "I just picked up that one and it's made in El Salvador."

"It was a big thing when we talked to your campaign people about how you wanted things to be made in America, do you have plans to change things?" the producer asked.

"I'll have to ask the folks who ordered this," Gingrich responded. "I don't order it and I don't do it."

Campaign spokesperson Michelle Selesky said "That was a rush order made by some of the volunteers." Selesky noted the print work on the shirts was done in Atlanta.

"One of the challenges with a volunteer campaign is lots of volunteers do lots of different things," Gingrich said.

Later Gingrich turned the topic to debt talks at a campaign event when he accused President Obama of being too rigid in the debt ceiling negotiations.

"The people who were elected in 2010 are not going to raise taxes," Gingrich said. "The president can pout, he can throw temper tantrums, do 30 minute television explanations of his anguish, it's not going to happen. Instead of having the president accept reality and try to find a way to work with Congress, he's behaved as if though we're in some kind of Imperial system where he gets to dictate the terms."

While Gingrich said he ultimately believes Congress will find a last minute way to avoid default, he thinks negotiations are much different then when he was Speaker of the House and President Bill Clinton was in office.

"Although we disagreed deeply, we understood that we wanted to get things done and we wanted to find a way to work together," Gingrich said in comments very similar to one's he made Tuesday. "He (President Clinton) accepted certain outcomes that president Obama doesn't seem to be able to accept."

The former Speaker made his comments when touring the Genesis Shelter in Atlanta. Genesis provides a home and services for homeless infants and their families.

"There are times in life when people really need systematic intervention and this, Genesis, is one of the places that works very hard to give people a second chance at life and a second chance at creating a positive future," Gingrich said.

After the event he returned to campaign headquarters to thank volunteers, showing up with several boxes of pizza for a group working the phone bank.

A number of Gingrich's top staff resigned in June. Since then, with a campaign reportedly a million dollars in debt, he has been relying on volunteers for outreach, campaigning–and occasionally ordering t-shirts.

"I believe in a positive, solutions-oriented campaign of substance and I think as we now move away from the consultants and back to that model, we're getting more and more coverage and having more and more impact and volunteers are a key part of that," he said.

Filed under: 2012 • Debt • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. ED FL

    Does Newt have a PIZZA account like his Tiffany acct. Maybe it his next TRYST that works in the pizza joint.

    July 27, 2011 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  2. Paul ny

    This guy has no chance. Anyone who donates money to him is wasting it.

    July 27, 2011 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  3. A disgusted former Republican

    If Gingrich thinks he is a leader, why does he think he and his fellow republican teabagger idiots can dictate terms when they only hold a majority in one house of Congress. The President doesn't need to bow before swine. Let them destroy the the world economy and see where it gets them.

    I guess you can't fix stupid!

    July 27, 2011 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  4. Dita

    I can never figure out if Newt knows everything he says is a lie, or if he's just a complete moron.

    July 27, 2011 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  5. thomas

    I didn't know Tiffany & Co made tea shirts !

    July 27, 2011 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  6. Al-NY,NY

    he is we didn't already know

    July 27, 2011 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  7. Rivenspeak

    Why is it when 30 people the House (which its self is only half of the three branches of government) refuse to budge, the President has to "find a way to work with them". But there is no call from former Speaker Gingrich to have the House (again, only one part of the 3 branches) to "find a way" to work with the Democratic Senate (the other half of the 3 branches) and the President (an entire branch)?

    July 27, 2011 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  8. anton

    I love how because it's just "volunteers" his campaign talking points of "made in america" are unimportant. Yeah make this man the leader of the country... can't even keep his t-shirt ordering people in step. Lame Newt.

    July 27, 2011 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  9. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    maybe he should have ordered them from Tiffany's. It really doesn't matter much though because Newt's chances have gone the way of the dodo bird.

    July 27, 2011 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  10. frank in valparaiso

    Closing corporate loopholes and getting rid of corporate tax giveaways is not raising taxes. Its stopping the hemmorage in the budget.

    July 27, 2011 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  11. Marie MD

    I have to wonder why this is such a big deal because it's almost impossible to find anything Made in the USA anymore. Old Navy yearly t-shirts made in Guatemala.
    Of course, this also shows us that companies (those millionaires and big corporations) don't create jobs in the US but in other countries. El Salvador and Guatemala? It used to be only China and Mexico!

    July 27, 2011 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    Oh my. Another hypocrisy from GOP. Surprise surprise.

    July 27, 2011 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |

    He's toast, folks.

    July 27, 2011 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  14. Aaron Lear

    Gingrich talks the talk, but he doesn't walk the walk. May be he doesn't know it....his campaign is like a dead man walking.

    July 27, 2011 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |

    Oops! Someone got caught talking out of both sides of his mouth.

    July 27, 2011 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  16. Anonymous

    T-shirts aren't the only challenge for your campaign, loser.

    July 27, 2011 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  17. cindy

    Methinks where your tshirts came from and what you and your party stand for speaks for itself...... Obama-Biden 2012

    July 27, 2011 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  18. Sandy

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! "made in El Salvador." I can't stop laughing. LMAO

    July 27, 2011 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |

    What a non-story given that we have a president that not made in the US – at least as demonstrated by his actions.

    July 27, 2011 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  20. Ed

    Damn newt cant win for losing

    July 27, 2011 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  21. Henry

    Hey Newt. Hang it up, YOU ARE OUTTA HERE. Bye bye

    July 27, 2011 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  22. anthony

    Hey hypocrite Newt... its called AMERICAN APPAREL and they are made right here in Los Angeles California. But typical republicans.. complaining about not enough jobs in America while rewarding those who send them overseas.

    July 27, 2011 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  23. Robert

    Again CNN lies and distorts truth I got a Newt 2012 shirt and it says USA no other nation or place on label. The left wants to crush anyone who will debate Obama before they get out of the gate, and help promote another spineless McCain. CCN shame on you folks again but did we expect anything else? NEWT 2012!

    July 27, 2011 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  24. s kel

    whats so sad about this is that newt still has supporters.

    July 27, 2011 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  25. Indy

    "The president can pout, he can throw temper tantrums, do 30 minute television explanations of his anguish

    Do Republicans have to lie every other sentence ? Obamas speech was 15 minutes, timed by Wolf Blitzer. You just have to get sick that every time a Republican speaks they have to lie, and if you have to lie about the little stuff like this it means you have no problem lying about the big stuff like JOBS,the ECONOMY.

    July 27, 2011 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
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