February 2nd, 2009
03:44 PM ET
11 years ago

Gingrich says Palin has head start in 2012

Newt Gingrich says Palin has the head start in Iowa.

Newt Gingrich says Palin has the head start in Iowa.

(CNN) - It's impossible to know how the Republican presidential field will stack up three years from now, yet former House Speaker Newt Gingrich says one candidate in particular may have a big head start.

Speaking at an event Monday sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor, Gingrich said Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's continued popularity among the GOP's base would give the former vice presidential candidate an instant boost in Iowa - the state whose caucuses, dominated by rank-and-file conservatives, kick off the primary season.

"Palin starts in Iowa with a substantial base," said Gingrich, who also noted how important the Iowa caucuses have proven to be in presidential campaigns.

He said Palin is "very formidable," and suggested the Alaska governor spend time developing "fairly sophisticated positions" on a range of issues.

Still, Gingrich said it's entirely too early to handicap the 2012 GOP presidential race, since it remains unclear which Republicans will run, and what the state of the economy will be.

"Nobody knows today who is going to fill the vacuum," said Gingrich.

Gingrich, who weighed his own presidential run last cycle, didn't hint at whether he might be interested in mounting his own bid in 2012.


Filed under: Newt Gingrich • Sarah Palin
soundoff (182 Responses)
  1. Bill in Ct.

    I can't truly believe some of you out here really want this woman to be President of the U.S.. She's not qualified, she knows nothing about the world and she's a divider. She see America though her eyes as two nations, the small town real Americans and the other part of America as anti-America, we can not afford that kind of division in the White House again. We went 8 years with that criminal Bush and Chaney and now some of you idiots out here want to go back down that road. Now I would like to ask some of you out here, if Palin was a African American woman and you people have seen all the crap shes said and done doing the campaign trail, ask yourselves and be HONEST about it, WILL YOU STILL FEEL THE SAME WAY ABOUT HER.

    February 2, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  2. Outspoken

    I'm not certain she's THE ONE, but I do know she would be WAAAAY better than what we have now. GO SARAH!!

    February 2, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  3. Veteran in Kansas

    Two losers with the headlines, well I guess this is just a non-news day.

    February 2, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  4. Obama Victim

    after 4 years of "The Messiah"................any repub will be able to win.........

    February 2, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  5. Obama 2.0

    Head start to loose again! She will never be the President, We will never hire another Republican for President, Bush ruined that for eternity.

    February 2, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  6. Phil

    Oh God..that will be the end of RNC as a national party. It will be a regional party.

    February 2, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  7. Lisa P

    I wouldn't take anything said at this point too seriously. A lot can change in four years, especially with the GOP being in flux as it is.

    February 2, 2009 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  8. Go back to Alaska and stay there!

    I wish she would just fade into oblivion! She completely destroyed the respect of the Republican Party (what little Bush left to be destroyed, anyways). If she runs again, I will do everything in my power to make sure she does not get the nomination.

    February 2, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  9. James

    Just the Katie Curric interviews alone show she is qualified to be our Commander in Chief and the leader of the free world. Perhaps no other serious candidates will run making it easy for her. She could put all those SNL skits together as her campaign ads.

    February 2, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  10. queencersei

    Not all that long ago John Mccain's primary campaign looked dead and most everyone was saying he would never get his parties nomination to run for President. Not all that long ago Hillary Clinton was the unbeatable frontrunner for the Democrats. Let's keep some perspective. It's only 2009 and your talking about an election to be held in 2012. An eternity in politcal years. Which Newt is well aware of. Anything can and will happen.

    February 2, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  11. RAG

    GIngrich saying that Palin has a head start in 2012 is like Carrot Top saying Paulie Shorr has a head start for Comedian of the Year. Hopeless losers.

    February 2, 2009 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  12. John

    We love you Palin. Thanks for being the spoiler. You will be able to walk to Russia and meet with them about any crisis and will play with French Pres. on the beach with out Cheney and ofcourse not McCain. By the way where ar those GOP clothes.

    February 2, 2009 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  13. Big D

    All this just after Palin announced on national TV that she has NO plans to run for President in 2012. But she wouldn't be the first politician to lie to the American public would she? Geitner, Daschle,
    Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Obama? I'm NOT republican but does
    anybody see a pattern here. Now the Dems are in control and here comes THEIR dirty laundry. Ain't poltics wonderful? different day, different people in the gutter of corruption and lies.

    February 2, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  14. Deshawn

    Funny thing is she has more experience than Obama in leadership. She can get things done....Obama is all talk and four years hopefully most people will realize it. Obama will fail because he has no convictions and is in the middle of "white" America.

    February 2, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  15. Deshawn

    The only laughing matter in 2012 will be the Democrats with their tails between their legs going back home losers. 🙂

    February 2, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  16. TomD

    What?? Seriously....she can't run. The Repubs need someone who can win. All she will accomplish is more division.

    February 2, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  17. John

    A head start for Palin in 2012?

    This kind of thinking is why Republicanism should be regarded as a communicable disease. Its a public health hazard that can make people become stupid.

    February 2, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  18. John

    Demorats = laughing stock of the future.

    February 2, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  19. Lynne

    LoL LoL LOL... That is the understatement of the still new year ... she does need to spend A LOT of time "developing fairly sophisticated positions" on a range of issues. O.M.G.

    February 2, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  20. Florida Joe

    IF SHE IS THE FUTURE OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.....THE FUTURE IS BLEAK.............

    February 2, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  21. PATC

    I pay taxes can I so I could possibly be on Palin's Cabinet.

    February 2, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  22. President Barack Obama

    Cut The Bull .....There Is No Way In Hell This Woman Would Be Elected For Anything ......Maybe Secretary Of Comedy!!!! LoL

    February 2, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  23. G.R.I.T.S. - Girl Raised in the South

    Sylvia – I promise you that no one who opposes Palin now will change their minds to support her. Her theocratic mentality and lack of education peg her as a loser, good for nothing more than laughs.

    February 2, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  24. AJ

    Oh good. If the republicans run this moron in 2012, a Democrat is sure to win.
    Run Sarah, RUN!!!

    February 2, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  25. Jeff

    If Palin has "continued popularity among the GOP's base" that shows just how messed up the Republican Party truly is at its base. Tina Fey would make a better candidate in 2012.

    February 2, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
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