Gingrich: I helped Romney get rich
December 6th, 2011
09:42 PM ET
2 years ago

Gingrich: I helped Romney get rich

(CNN) - Republican presidential contender Newt Gingrich stumbled upon a new campaign line Tuesday during an appearance on CNBC. The former House speaker came to the conclusion that policies he shepherded through the House of Representatives led to GOP rival Mitt Romney’s personal wealth.

“I was part of (the late Rep.) Jack Kemp's little cabal of supply-siders who, largely by helping convince (President Ronald) Reagan and then working with Reagan, profoundly changed the entire trajectory of the American economy in the nineteen-eighties,” Gingrich said. “You could make the argument that I helped Mitt Romney get rich because I helped pass the legislation.”

CNBC host Larry Kudlow asked if Gingrich had ever made that argument before, prompting the White House hopeful to say: "I am as of right this minute, it just occurred to me."

Gingrich continued, “He (Romney) should be thanking me because I did the macroeconomic things necessary to make his career possible."

Team Gingrich said the comments on CNBC were an "attempt at humor."

Tuesday wasn’t the first time Gingrich has touted his role in creating "supply-side economics" during his tenure as House speaker. He made similar remarks last week on Fox News Channel, saying he “helped Ronald Reagan and Jack Kemp develop supply-side economics.”

Gingrich served as a Republican congressman from Georgia throughout the 1980s, during which time many Republicans sided with then-President Reagan on lowering income and capital gains taxes with the hopes of spurring production of goods and services.

Mitt Romney helped found the private equity firm Bain Capital in 1984, and went on to make tens of millions of dollars by investing and restructuring companies.


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (96 Responses)
  1. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    That would mean that government controls the economy and no one does the the work themselves. So, does supply side really work? I don't think so since it hasn't trickled down and the difference in the wealth gap has grown considerably over the course of time.

    December 6, 2011 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  2. SiriusVH

    It is not supply-side economics (a well-known oxymoron) that got Reagan out of the 1980 recession. It is old-fashion Keynesian deficit spending, disguised as 'supply-side economics' via tax cuts, that ended the recession. During Reagan's tenure, the Federal debt increased by 186%! It was so much the factor behind the recovery that, decades later, even D. Cheney, implicitly admitted it by saying 'Reagan has proved that deficits don't matter.' In fact, Reagan gave the best proof ever that government spending (in his case via military procurements) boosts economic growth (at least as long as interest rates don't catch up).

    December 6, 2011 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  3. SiriusVH

    The 'funny' part is that the deficit got so much out of hands under Reagan that he eventually had to raise taxes! Brilliant economic strategy! Is that what Gingrich is going to tout as his claim to fame?

    December 6, 2011 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  4. Paul

    And he invented the Internet!

    December 6, 2011 11:01 pm at 11:01 pm |
  5. Steven Colo

    And he got a heck of a lot of cash out of it as well. Ol' Newt isn't shy about his greed.

    December 6, 2011 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  6. DareToBeTrue

    Heck, we should all thank Gingrich for providing us with such an unblemished example of morality, faithfulness, professional ethics... Oh, right, he's none of those things. That would be Romney. (!)

    December 6, 2011 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  7. reality check

    Next newt will take credit for Sting's tantric sexual abilities. He's going to "arrogant" himself right out the race.

    December 6, 2011 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  8. Lee

    Newt is right, of course.

    But I'm not sure helping one who inherited millions to make hundreds of millions while dismantling jobs and pensions here and shipping manufacturing jobs off to China (Mitt Romney) is a good thing.

    "Trickle down" economics worked in the 80's like it worked in the Bush era, the wealth gap increased and the middle class lost at the expense of people like Willard "Mitt" Romney.

    December 6, 2011 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  9. m

    The next will be hearing from the old gas bag is he is actually the guy in Genesis that created the world! What a pompous JERK!

    December 6, 2011 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  10. MrCoto

    I think I'm going to be sick ...

    December 6, 2011 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  11. PackersFans

    Do not Vote for Newt!!! Vote for Mitt Romney can save America!! Newt cannot beat Pres Obama because Newt has bad case in past and weakness pointless!! He cannot save America!!!

    December 6, 2011 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  12. Former Republican, now an Independent

    Gingrich is correct in saying he was a large part of the Reaganomics crowd. It is precisely those economic policies that started the country down the path that nearly caused another great depression. Now the 2012 GOP candidates want to take us down that same path of proven bad economic policy.

    December 6, 2011 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  13. Rob in MO

    And he's braging about that – sad.

    December 6, 2011 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  14. scottf

    SO you are the one responsible for the Trickle down economics that failed in the Bush administration. Thanks for the heads up. Now I for sure will not vote for you. There is no place for another narcisistic sociopath in DC. The Republican clown circus is full up.

    December 7, 2011 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  15. Wylie-Mike

    His legislation is what ushered in the current economic debacle that we are in. His was one of the architects that repealed the Glass-Steagall Act and set regulations that lined the pockets of bureaucrats.
    So it is true that Newt opened the door to opportunism that made it necessary for businesses like that of Romney's to 'invest' in and do what they could to salvage businesses that fell victim to Newt's economic carnage.

    December 7, 2011 12:08 am at 12:08 am |
  16. dominic

    yeah by help passing NAFTA.

    December 7, 2011 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  17. dave_in_altmar

    It was called "trickle down economics" when Raygun was in office...

    December 7, 2011 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  18. John

    So your taking a part of the failed and disastrous policies of the Reagan years the got us all rolling down this hill into the debt plain. Wow it is so nice to see a Republican standing up and admitting his part in all this. Thanks Newt.

    December 7, 2011 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  19. billy davis

    So Trump made Lady Gaga and Gingrich made Romney. These 2 egotistical buffoons will stop at nothing tooting their own horns. They are EPIC LIARS...

    December 7, 2011 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  20. enuff

    He "came to the conclusion" as he was being interviewed? and he wants to brag about it? What has he done to help the average worker's wealth?

    December 7, 2011 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  21. mike with a mustache

    I would not be bragging about being one of the guys who invented supply side economics. You're basically saying that you invented a way to bring the nation into recession and fatten the wallets of the rich at the expense of everyone else. Why is anyone still buying into this economic theory anyway? I don't know of it ever working.

    December 7, 2011 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  22. A disgusted former Republican

    So Gingrich finally admits that he was one of the founders of Voodoo Economics; wonderful!

    I wonder why he doesn't take credit for making adultery popular among republicans?

    December 7, 2011 12:33 am at 12:33 am |
  23. Marry

    Wouldn’t it be nice if Gingrich’s “work” had left a little more in the pockets of the 99% and not led to rationalizing American jobs and work to be shipped abroad? To bring them back a LOT of innovation, modernization and investing has to take place in the country – with Gingrich that is not going to happen! They going to sit on the top and let it trickle down one drop at the time.
    Out with those “pledges”!

    December 7, 2011 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  24. ..a laurel and hardy handshake..

    Hey Ollie, what WAS THAT SAYING THAT MAKES THE TEANUT-GOP SO VERY GIVING ?
    ..
    Well Stan, it was "I NEVER MET A RICH MAN THAT DIDN'T BENEFIT FROM PAYING NO TAXES".

    December 7, 2011 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
  25. enuff

    I get it now... by resurrecting the god Reagan, he is able to pander to a consevative base that still believes that administration was infalliable. He will invoke any name of a popular figure and say they were best friends if it means he gets a vote

    December 7, 2011 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
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