Bachmann camp: Gingrich morphs positions based on 'who's paying'
December 16th, 2011
03:44 AM ET
3 years ago

Bachmann camp: Gingrich morphs positions based on 'who's paying'

Sioux City, Iowa (CNN) - As Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann attempts to lump together rivals Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney as less than conservative, her campaign went a step further late Thursday, suggesting Gingrich has changed positions based on who was paying him.

Bachmann campaign manager Keith Nahigian and spokeswoman Alice Stewart spoke with reporters in the "spin room" following a Republican presidential debate in Sioux City, Iowa, co-sponsored by the Iowa Republican Party and Fox News. It was the last GOP debate before the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses.

"I think the issue with Newt Gingrich is that Romney is a moderate. Newt Gingrich is portraying himself as a conservative even though he is a moderate," Nahigian said. "I think that's what gets [Bachmann] really going - people who morph into different things, on different years, according to who's paying them and who's not paying them."

"That's what she's trying to show: the difference between being a strong conservative and being a flying around conservative," he said.

Stewart reiterated Bachmann's insistence that she is the only "consistent conservative" in the GOP race.

"They're both one and the same," Stewart said of Gingrich and Romney. "When you're talking about all these issues that we've outlined when it comes to the (health care) individual mandate, they are the father and grandfather of the individual mandate. When it comes to immigration and the TARP and the bailout and several issues – they're one and the same."

In the debate, Bachmann repeated her claim that Gingrich lobbied for government-backed mortgage group Freddie Mac, saying Gingrich "was taking $1.6 million to influence senior Republicans."

As he's previously maintained, Gingrich said he "never lobbied under any circumstance."

"I want to state unequivocally, for every person watching tonight,” the former House speaker added. “I have never once changed my positions because of any kind of payment."

"The truth is I was a national figure who was doing just fine, doing a whole variety of things, including writing best-selling books, making speeches. And the fact is I only chose to work with people whose values I shared and having people have a chance to buy a house is a value I believe still is important in America."

- Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN


Filed under: 2012 • Michele Bachmann • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. Kevin O.

    Alice Stewart needs to get laid.

    December 16, 2011 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  2. JDS

    Once again Bachmann got her facts incorrect. But she sure has gotten them "straight".

    December 16, 2011 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  3. Dennis1020

    Bachmann currently serves in the Congress and Gingrich previously served in the Congress. Because of the uncontrolled lobbying that goes on in WashDC, every member of Congress, past and present, "morphs based on who's paying."

    December 16, 2011 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  4. it is sad

    Why do I have the feeling that after Michelle loses we will see her again as part of the Westboro Baptist group? She has been very consistant with her nuttiness, and I expect that to continue. But if the truth be known, I released an overwhelming amount of gas when I heard Gingrich say he could say he had honestly never accepted money to change his mind. I lit a candle and then started laughing... I think he has dementia if he really believes his own quoute.

    December 16, 2011 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  5. boyamidumb

    Do you think that she'll ever realize that she is actually dumber than Palin? Who thought it would be possible, but it's true.I am not sure how comedians will survive after this election season. I mean this is funny stuff – and what's better, it's just begun. Sorry Modern Family, no Emmy for you this year. These people have a lock on it.

    OH MY GOD!!!!!!!! ONE OF THEM COULD ACTUALLY BE PRESIDENT!!!!!! MOMMMMMMMMMYYYYYYYYY

    December 16, 2011 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  6. Kathleen Farrell

    This fight over labels is killing me. Nobody with a brain is looking for the "most conservative." Who wouldn't benefit from an open-minded president eager to consider new ideas to meet the needs of a changing world? Why would we want someone who is molded into one set of ideals?

    December 16, 2011 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  7. Buster Bloodvessel

    Well, it's true, but she's hardly the first to notice.

    December 16, 2011 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  8. LovesIrony

    Hey Minnesota 6 . Proud of your Representative?

    December 16, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  9. Newturd

    Here is the choice. If you want the War Machine to be fed more by attacking Iran vote for these two or Romney. If you are tired of the fine men and women of the US Military fighting other countries fights then vote for Paul. If your tired of our sons and daughters, fathers and mothers dying to protect the oil fields in Iraq or the Opium fields in Afgahnastan, then vote for Paul. He will bring the troops home (all of them) and defend America.

    If you want more of the same, being the world's bully, then vote for Romney, Gingrich, Bachman, Obama. They are all the same, same old B.S.!

    December 16, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  10. animal48

    I voted R my whole life, until Moron George ran for his 2nd term. Then I switched. I wouldn't trust any of these republiclowns to run a lemonaide stand. They really scare me.

    December 16, 2011 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. JohnW

    @dallas.alphonso
    You might want to check what she's done in her actual job before commending her on her work ethic. She's gotten almost nothing done whatsoever in congress.

    December 16, 2011 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  12. Tired of War

    Bring ALL of our troops home, vote for Dr. Paul!!!

    December 16, 2011 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    All the bloodthirsty deathcult members want war. Attacking Iran is the primary goal of the hidden elite running the deathcult. They don't care the war is unnecessary and Iran poses no threat to the US. They don't care that gas prices will skyrocket. They don't care if the global economy crashes. They don't care that WW III might start. The don't care about any of that. They don't care about any of us. It's just that simple. OWS!

    December 16, 2011 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  14. Aeromechanic

    Please people, for the love of God, you have to realize that Bachman is in no way smart enough to be POTUS.

    December 16, 2011 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  15. The Other Michael in Houston

    As crazy as Michelle is, she is right, well almost, she didn't include herself. ALL POLITICIANS CHANGE THEIR POSITION BASED ON WHO IS PAYING THEM! That includes President Obama as well. Michelle Bachmann do us a big favor, the next time you decided to say something factual, which is very rare, tell us a fact that most of us don't already know.

    December 16, 2011 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  16. Mark from Canada

    Moderate, extremist, Nazi's, centre-of-right, conservative, or just a republican – what difference does it make? All this stuff is just made up subjective hyperbole and spin. The reality is that they are a bit of all of these things. Some day I hope that the political spectrum in the US will stop with the stupid labels and look at people for their diverse views. We don't belong in boxes with labels. Nonetheless, we can see how dangerous the views are from the likes of Bachman, Gingrich, Romney, and the rest of the GOP candidates are. Leave these guys to run the country for another 20 years and there will be nothing left. Leave them as the opposition to the democrats (the new republicans) and we have 40 years before the country is ruined. We have a choice, drag it out or let it happen now. Sometimes I'm thinking of voting for the right just to bring it on sooner rather than later, perhaps there will be enough resources left over to give the next generation a chance to build a new future without this political nightmare.

    December 16, 2011 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  17. Edgar

    Newt beliefs depends on how many zero's are on the check?

    That's like saying the sky is blue.

    December 16, 2011 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  18. The Other Michael in Houston

    As crazy as Michelle is, she is right, well almost, she didn't include herself. ALL POLITICIANS CHANGE THEIR POSITION BASED ON WHO IS PAYING THEM! That includes President Obama as well. Michelle Bachmann do us a big favor, the next time you decided to say something factual, which is very rare, tell us a fact that most of us don't already know! Wow!

    December 16, 2011 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  19. Larry in Houston

    She'll never make it -she needs to go back to where she lives – take her money with her – I'm a registered Dem – but she's a disgrace to the Republican party – they need to quietly take her by the hand – & lead her away from any more debates – somebody needs to sit her down – & actually Talk to her. ( and say it in a nice way – ""Michelle, You need to drop out"" ) & Do Not Endorse Anyone.

    December 16, 2011 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  20. vatoloke

    The scary thing about Michelle Mengele Bachmann is that people actually voted for her. I guess that northern climate does can affect brain cells.

    December 16, 2011 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  21. bosmonkey

    When will Bachmann just...go...away!!!!

    If I never heard of her, Pailn or Perry again, it would be too soon.

    December 16, 2011 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  22. Emery

    The GOP field this time around is full of nothing but bigots, clowns, idiots, windbags, comic book villains, and religious crackpots. Bachmann isn't even on anyone's mind anymore, much less their radar, so talking about anything she says is an automatic moot point. Every single GOP candidate for 2012 is a complete joke. It's as if the GOP put an ad on Craigslist and requested that any walking, breathing, braindead person with at least a double-digit IQ run for office.

    December 16, 2011 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  23. AEK

    And? Oh...there is no more? Very profound, Ms. Bachmann!

    December 16, 2011 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  24. Bambam

    Why is that mongrel Bachmann still in the race? She's an idiot. I can't believe the Repukican establishment hasn't asked her kindly to remove herself.

    December 16, 2011 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  25. Robert

    From the look on her face, I am wondering where Newt's left hand is!

    December 16, 2011 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
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