Clinton in control, Gingrich says
January 21st, 2011
08:51 AM ET
12 years ago

Clinton in control, Gingrich says

(CNN) – For Newt Gingrich, it's like Bill Clinton never left.

The former House Speaker tells the conservative Human Events the second half of Obama's term has essentially become "the third term of the Clintons."

"I think it's fascinating," said Gingrich in the interview published Friday. "You're sort of seeing the beginning of the third term of the Clintons because the first two years of Obama was such a failure in popular acceptance."

Since overseeing massive midterm losses, the president has installed several former Clinton administration officials, including selecting Clinton commerce Secretary Bill Daley as his chief of staff and former Clinton economic guru Gene Sperling as director of the National Economic Council. Meanwhile, former Clinton domestic policy adviser Bruce Reed has become chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden.

"It's almost a Chicago-machine musical game, and all of it represents an increase in power for Bill Clinton," said Gingrich.

Gingrich, who is thought to be a likely Republican presidential candidate, may just hope his comments needle members of the left wing of the Democratic Party, many of whom think Clinton, and now Obama, are governing too far toward the center.

"It must be fascinating to be one of those left-wing activist groups that spent so much time and energy beating Hillary Clinton because they didn't want to see this kind of administration," he said.

But Gingrich doesn't want to give the impression Obama actually is a moderate president – after all, he will need the support of independents if he faces off against Obama - saying the administration uses "the language of the center-right, while in fact fighting for the policies of the left.

Filed under: Bill Clinton • Newt Gingrich • President Obama
soundoff (120 Responses)
  1. NameEdward

    Anyone but failin palin

    January 21, 2011 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  2. A keen observer

    It must be maddening that his old nemisis, Bill Clinton, still has the upper hand!

    January 21, 2011 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  3. USA401

    No way I would vote for Gingrich. He is way too close to the Republican base. The last President who was that close to his base ended up in 8 years of misery followed by a two year massive hangover.

    January 21, 2011 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  4. Adam

    Good deal!!! Look how great they did in their first two terms. GO CLINTONS!!!!!!!!!!

    January 21, 2011 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  5. Thomas

    And why does anyone listen to Gingrich?

    January 21, 2011 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  6. Enrique

    Even if this were true, what's the problem? The economy experienced rapid economic growth and the federal budget was in surplus during Clinton's presidency. Newt is an idiot.

    January 21, 2011 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  7. Nadeem

    I don't care who is in control as long as the economy keeps heading in the right direction. I always liked an Obama Clinton team

    January 21, 2011 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  8. Seriously?

    Newt still spewing his idiotic and insane rhetoric. Nice to know some things never change. Keep it up Newt – it will ensure you never get elected again. The American people are on to you now. Some of us have long memories and remember you from before you took you little hiatus (tail tucked between your legs). If you do throw your hat in the ring, the Dems will have a field day pulling out all you old sound bites and showing you for exactly what you are.

    Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us – and we are not buying it this time. You are the only Fool here if you actually think "we the people" would put in power.

    January 21, 2011 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  9. Frank R

    Great news! Maybe he can help get the budget surplus back that 'W' & the rest of the "fiscally responsible" republicans ran into the ground!

    January 21, 2011 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  10. Marie MD

    Poor little insignificant meet! It's the obama administration you idiot! !!!! Sad,so sad from someone who left congress in disgrace.

    January 21, 2011 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  11. Storm

    Clinton never left?? Unfortunately Clinton left and we got stuck with the putrid GOP & GW Bush. Newt is as dumb as a box of rock because we remember Clinton as giving us a SURPLUS before the greedy GOP and their corporate masters killed the economy

    January 21, 2011 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  12. Brian

    Does it strike anyone else that Gingrich, in one set of comments, essentially contradicts himself? A better question would be whether that contradiction surprises anyone. Senator Cohen's recent remarks were certainly ill timed. But his statement about short blasts of propaganda fits Gingrich to a tee.

    January 21, 2011 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  13. JOSH B. from OHIO

    This is not news. This is the reason why Newt is not in office and never will be again. He is polarizing, his conclusions of political decisions are more akin to conspiracy theories and he has no public responsibility. I don't find it shocking that he would state this "third Clinton term" non-sense, because it's the same non-sense he was sputtering out 10-12 years ago. I don't even know why reporting on his comments are necessary since he won't run for the presidency and his influence over voters is minimal and regional at best.

    January 21, 2011 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  14. GOP Taliban Victim

    And the person saying this is the second coming of Richard Nixon. Gingrich, shut up and go away...PLEASE!

    January 21, 2011 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  15. JoeT

    Just feelin' bad for Newt. Envy much?

    January 21, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  16. joe

    Hey Gingrich go and crawl back into your hole nobody cares what you say.

    January 21, 2011 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  17. MikeMazzla

    Ummmm jealous much?

    January 21, 2011 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  18. Jason

    Take me back to the Clinton years, 401k was growing by leaps and bounds and I was getting raises! No wars, people were happy and oh yes Newt was speaker, the only drawback of going back, but old Newt he's a real piece of work, remember he left his wife while she was dying, so moral. . .

    January 21, 2011 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  19. Huzzah

    53 percent approval rating is a failure? Being a moderate is a sellout? Really, I think the "mainstream" or the President really doesn't care what the 15% extreme left or right has to say about anything anymore Newt. Nor should they. I that what YOU are afraid of?

    January 21, 2011 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  20. Liam

    For two years Obama has been adept at saying one thing while doing another. But I take it as a postive if Obama is now open to helping the economy rather than trashing corporations who most of us work for. So if his misguided agenda the last two years is a thing of the past I am happy for the President as it could be huge.

    January 21, 2011 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
1 2 3 4 5