Gingrich: Rival leaking Cain details would be a 'pariah'
November 2nd, 2011
09:41 PM ET
7 years ago

Gingrich: Rival leaking Cain details would be a 'pariah'

(CNN) - As questions swirl over whether rival presidential campaigns leaking details of past sexual harassment claims against Herman Cain, one 2012 hopeful is denouncing such tactics as 'repulsive.'

"I'd want to see the evidence, but I would say if it turns out that a Republican presidential candidate deliberately went out and created this kind of a story about a fellow candidate, that they would pretty rapidly become a pariah to the rest of us and they'd fire who did it," Gingrich said Wednesday on CNN's "Erin Burnett OutFront."

Gingrich's comments come as Cain's campaign made claims that Texas Gov. Rick Perry's staff were behind leaks to the media that Cain had been accused of sexual harassment when he was the president of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s.

Perry's campaign denied those allegations, but did circulate articles that suggest Mitt Romney has ties to staffers who worked with Cain at the National Restaurant Association.

Gingrich said Wednesday he wasn't sure if another campaign was behind the leaks, but that if the claims were true there would need to be consequences.

"I'm not taking Herman's word for it," Gingrich said. "If it turns out he's right they better fire a bunch of people in the next 24 hours or expect all Republicans of every background to turn against him because that's the kind of behavior I find totally repulsive in this political system."

Gingrich said the attention paid on the story by media outlets was overblown, saying the focus should instead be on substantive policy issues like jobs and the economy.

"I think there's a desire in the Washington press corps to cover gossip over policy as often as possible," Gingrich said. "Just look at the Twitter thing a couple months ago with Congressman Weiner, which was a stupid thing for him to do and a sign he's a stupid person but that covered a lot more time and attention than did all sorts of public policy issues that are vastly more important to the lives of the American people."

Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Tony

    So, are you saying that Republicans cover for one another? In case some Republican fools around, like a certain former history professor, other Republicans should look the other way?

    November 2, 2011 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  2. Larry L

    Would that be as bad as hosing a staffer... while you led the charge against Bill Clinton... while your wife fought cancer? Evil.

    November 2, 2011 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  3. B W Styles

    This is just Meet trying to kill 2 birds with 1 stone. Hey Meet, if everyone else implodes that would make you king, wouldn't it?

    November 2, 2011 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  4. bb in carrboro

    could newt perhaps be projecting feelings from his own past onto this story? he doth protest too much.

    November 2, 2011 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  5. s

    Newt is right.

    November 2, 2011 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  6. Stop spending

    Newt is right. I think he is going to see a surge in the polls.

    November 2, 2011 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  7. Jessica

    Stupid thing for Gingrich and the rest

    Gingrich, in particular, should not get himself involved in this. He is opening his own can of worms since he was not only accused, but was found guilty of sexual affairs on the side of his marriage. They're, of course ALL stupid and should quit running for public office after being caught.

    Gingrich is apparently sounding his own trumpet. It seems like he's trying to defend his own immorality.

    November 2, 2011 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  8. Depirts

    This is most definitely a smear campaign. Not the first time in American politics. So much for dealing with the issues. National Enquirer will probably have something on their front page soon.

    November 2, 2011 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  9. normajean @ verizon ,com

    Dear Newt.....are you still here?????????? With your colorfully distructive background being brought up everywhere, I would have thought you would have excused yourself from the political scene and retired to the Islands or somewhere far away......but here you are still throwing around your opinion as if it had value.....well , enjoy it while you can as we ignore you completely !!!!!!!

    November 2, 2011 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  10. Pete Dee

    Boys club.

    November 2, 2011 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  11. Dan J

    Wow, Gingrich is spot on for a change.

    November 2, 2011 11:44 pm at 11:44 pm |
  12. opus512

    The only person that "created" this story is Herman Cain.

    November 2, 2011 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  13. skarphace

    LOL. Gingrich trying to take Cain and Perry down at the same time. Classic.

    It won't work, Newt. The Tea Party will love Perry for this. They will never love you.

    November 3, 2011 12:43 am at 12:43 am |
  14. Marques

    Who's speaking?

    Look who's speaking! Of all persons.

    November 3, 2011 01:00 am at 1:00 am |
  15. kat

    GO Gingrich! We need your experience to turn this country around. Keep climbing in the polls. I would vote for any the GOP Candidates, with the exception of Paul, If he's the candidate, I'll just stay home and wait for BHO to be re-elected and watch our country fall. We really need someone with some experience

    November 3, 2011 01:09 am at 1:09 am |
  16. TP will be flushed after use

    He's one to talk

    November 3, 2011 01:11 am at 1:11 am |
  17. Matt

    Gingrich has absolutely NO moral authority even to comment on Cain's controversy. Does he forget who he is?

    November 3, 2011 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  18. Brian

    Newt, alas you want to do the typical republican thing...cover it up...blame someone even if you're wrong in doing so, or spin it somehow to make you look good.
    Sorry Newt, this is a substantive issue that if proven true would all but end Hermie's chances in the general election – not that he has a chance anyway.

    November 3, 2011 02:47 am at 2:47 am |
  19. Dee

    Gingrich needs to keep quiet he has a lot of skeletons in and out of his closet. The media has given him a pass he needs to be vented for his phalendering ways.

    November 3, 2011 02:54 am at 2:54 am |
  20. lgny

    LOL! He'd make the leaker a pariah just like his predecessors did with the Swift Boat attacks on Kerry and the false stories that McCain had fathered a black child. Dirty tricks are a common practice among this group.

    November 3, 2011 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  21. RINO Bil

    I intend to be an informed voter. I consider this information about Mr. Cain's behavior (both relating to the original incidents and his handling of their revelations to the public) to be relevant to my decision making process of whom I choose to represent the Republican Tea Party. It appears that Mr. Gingrich believes in hiding such character information from U.S. voters. By adapting this attitude, Newt Gingrich is doing a disservice to both his party and the country.

    November 3, 2011 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  22. Dee

    I understand that Mr. Cain would want to know who released the information regarding the allegations against him, but it's much more important for him to establish a consistant, believeable stand on the charges and stick with them. He has been flip-flopping and dodging and SPUTTERING about the incident since it hit the media, and a lot of folks are still waiting for the bottom line truth about what really happened.

    November 3, 2011 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  23. Darren Frazier

    I saw the report on the super committee 5.6 trillion dollars sounds like a large deal. The question would be how to cut entitlements. The infrustructure is a important part of our lively hood. I also do not believe the Bush era tax cuts alone will give the economy the bust it needs, and it was these tax cuts that caused or led to the budget crisis. I believe that it will be a hard sell to either party. The flat tax postcard is still not proportional in respescts to comparable dollars. The 9,9,9 plan sound like a used car sale, don't get me wrong I like used cars when they come with the right options. It seems like the people that can afford to buy new would rather buy used. I know that it seems mutual at 2.8 to 2.8 trillion could you live with 1.8 trillion in entitlements and the 2.8 trillion in Bush era tax cuts. I know we are not having that debate, but those are the numbers that were used in the report.

    Thank You

    November 3, 2011 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  24. JLFuller

    I like Newt but he is all wrong if he thinks another campaign leaked the Herman story. Romney and Perry have denied complicty. So unless the candiate himslef leaked the story it surely has to be some opportunistic lawyer, outisder or maybe even one of the women involved.

    November 3, 2011 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  25. Keeping it Real

    Gingrich appears to be the most level headed candidate to date.

    November 3, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
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