Unfair slam from Gingrich?
April 5th, 2011
12:20 PM ET
11 years ago

Unfair slam from Gingrich?

Washington (CNN) – When Newt Gingrich warned a New Hampshire crowd Monday night that President Obama was trying to "extort contributions" from supporters by announcing his reelection bid so early, it might just have been a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

After all, the former House Speaker, for better or worse, has long been recognized as among the most aggressive and successful fundraisers in the Republican Party. In 2010, he raised close to $15 million through his various organizations and political action committees, a sum that far outpaced that of any other potential GOP presidential candidate.

Indeed, if Gingrich and the president have anything it common, it is that they both know how to raise money – a lot of it.

Gingrich on Monday told a gathering at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics that Obama was going to "use his office to extort contributions on a scale we've never seen before," adding that "he's in effect trying to create a Chicago style machine for the whole country with a billion dollars."

To be sure, the president's reelection timing Monday was certainly all about money. As CNN reported, it's no coincidence the president filed papers with the Federal Election Commission (a move that legally allows him to raise campaign money) four days after the start of the year's second quarter.

When you add to that the fact that the president's team has already scheduled a string of fundraising events over the next two months, it becomes clear the Obama money-making machine that raised nearly $750 million in the 2008 cycle is back in full swing.

But there's every indication that Gingrich, who formed an exploratory committee sooner than most every other GOP presidential candidate, has the same fundraising philosophy as Obama: the earlier the better.

And, as the Washington Post reported in February, the vast fundraising groundwork Gingrich has been constructing over the last several years instantly makes him the fundraising powerhouse in the GOP presidential race.

There's no doubt few Republicans will be able to match the president's fundraising machine, but Gingrich just might.

A spokesman for Gingrich did not respond to CNN on the issue.

Filed under: 2012 • Newt Gingrich • President Obama
soundoff (76 Responses)
  1. Roscoe

    Newt is an expert on bad and illegal behavior. He's been practicing since he married his high school teacher. With people like this in office, is there any wonder that the country is in trouble.

    April 5, 2011 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  2. Dave IL

    Isn't great to see the fair and balanced reporting of CNN. While reporting that Obama is targeting 1 Billion dollars, they find fault in Gingrich raising 15 million. According to my math, that's about 1.5 cents for every Obama dollar.

    April 5, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  3. Alan

    Maybe CNN shouldn't post headlines with questions meant to lead readers to an opinion. This isn't Fox News.

    April 5, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  4. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Pot-kettle. You're just a liar on a money making venture with no intention of really running, Newt! You know you're unelectable, but you'll happily shear the willing sheep...

    April 5, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  5. the real ib

    you people talk about republican millionaire friends who don't want to pay taxes. I guess you have forgot about Obama and GE who paid 0 taxes last year. With gas prices and inflation going out of site how long do you think it will be before the economy tanks again. Yes; I did screem about high energy prices under Bush which I know all you will blame for the gas prices going back up again under Obama. The white house doesn't even realize that inflation is getting out of controll again if they did they would be raising interest rates. They don't see anything but roses and don'thave enough sense to see they are dying roses.

    April 5, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  6. Al-NY,NY

    Did Newter say something...? I thought I thought it was the whistling of hot air escaping a tire

    April 5, 2011 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  7. notfooledbydistractions

    I don't even listen to gingrich, he says one thing and two hours later spews the opposite opinion. He's a bombthrower, not a serious candidate. I don't waste my time with him.

    April 5, 2011 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  8. FM

    I do wonder on whether people like Newt are living in their own planet. Doesn't he understand that at this age, the world has changed. No one can hide anything. They will always be put on the lime light! I can't wait the campaigning season to kick off. We are going to hear/learn a lot.

    April 5, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  9. Michael

    Newt, the liar. next Tom the liar will join him.

    April 5, 2011 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  10. Thomas

    Hypocrisy is nothing new for Gingrich. To expect otherwise from him would be foolish and naive.

    April 5, 2011 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  11. Marry

    Would like to comment – but this one is too easy. I just skip it…

    April 5, 2011 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  12. Demi

    And it is claimed that this guy is smart. Hypocrate of the highest order.

    April 5, 2011 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  13. Realistic

    Newt *gangrene on America* continues to throw "turd bombs" at the president and as long as Newt *gangrene* continues to saddle the sidelines, he is unimportant. Until *gangrene on America* enters the race, his political farce will continue and in most voters eyes, he diminishes himself with this *turd* bombs he is throwing at the president. Either get in or move aside and stop wasting our time.

    April 5, 2011 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  14. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Newt and his "Third Lady" will never get into the WH so he can tell her "I used that as extortion to get you to marry me".

    April 5, 2011 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  15. Lee

    I see, so when the President announces his re-election plans, it is "extortion." When the GOP uses that same announcement to start lining their coffers, it is "fundraising." It's important to understand these fundamental differences, words are so tricky.

    April 5, 2011 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  16. Michael in Houston

    The level of hypocrisy this man oozes is staggering. Whats even more alarming, is that he openly does it without blinking an eye which points to his utter arrogance. If that does not make your skin crawl then I dont know what will.
    His candidacy is defined as an arrogant hypocrite. This makes him not only unsuitable for the Presidency but also makes him unsuitable for ANY public office.

    April 5, 2011 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  17. Rosslaw

    Gingrich is going the same, stomach-churning hypocritical route as Palin and will only reinforce the putrid image he has worked hard to fashion in the minds of most Americans as the Sarah has done.

    April 5, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  18. Texan for Obama

    I donated last night and will donate every month. It wasn't extortion... I gave freely. It's because I will do my little part to help President Obama get re-elected so those Republican rednecks won't get in the White House. Yes, we can AGAIN!!

    April 5, 2011 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  19. Marshall M

    Newt Gingrich hands out fake awards in exchange for cash. He makes money right now running a fake awards for small businesses scam. Last year he tried to give one of his fake awards to a small business called The Lodge in Dallas, Texas. In exchange for a $5,000 donation, Gingrich offered The Lodge, a strip club, a certificate, a novelty gavel and a dinner with him. When Mr. Gingrich realized he was giving one of his fake awards - for a $5,000 donation - to a strip club he decided to rescind the award and the dinner invitation. In mid-December, Gingrich sent another letter to The Lodge and asked them for a $2,000 donation to his American Solutions organization. This is how Newt Gingrich makes his money but he doesn't think that you earned yours.

    April 5, 2011 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  20. dumbasrocks [R]s

    When you [R]s go to your picture dictionary to look up those "big" words, guess who's pitcure you see under the words: 'fool', 'asinine', 'cheater' and 'lugnut'? And you'll know you are smarter than a 5th grader when you understand the reason for this.

    .....and the [R] Brotherhood, with a straight face, would wish to run this country again? ...and there are enough genetically challenged morons out there to allow them that wish? America is threatened alright, but not nearly so much by foreigners than by the home-grown simpletons who vote [R] without a clue.

    April 5, 2011 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  21. Tony in Maine

    Newt is everything that's wrong with American politics today. Come to think of it, he is personally responsible for the chasm that now separates the two major parties making compromise impossible. Historians a hundred years from now will tell their students that the Newt was a mischief maker without peer on the American scene.

    In words even Newt can understand, for the good of our nation he needs to (insert four letters starting with s and ending with U.)

    April 5, 2011 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  22. Sebastian

    Any politician that has taken money from a corporation (who only exist to make a profit) has EXTORTED money.

    Why do you think corporations coerce their employees into participating in PACS? It's because they are buying influence with politicians so that they get laxed restrictions on their operations and low to ZERO taxes on their earnings. The ONLY reason a corporation spends money is to earn a higher return on it.

    Newt is an idiot to put the spotlight on "extortion" through campaign contributions. As the party of Corporations over People, his Republican Party is the BIGGEST EXTORTIONIST out there. He's such a fool!

    April 5, 2011 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  23. kmp

    Unfortunately he is not speaking to everyone he is just speaking to the Faux News acoclytes who only see this president as a corrupt Chicago politician.

    April 5, 2011 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  24. T'sah from Virginia

    [To be sure, the president's reelection timing Monday was certainly all about money. ]

    CNN sounds just like ginGRINCH!!! It's a sin to raise MONEY for a campaign!!

    April 5, 2011 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  25. Thanks Newt

    You just convinced me to give to Obama's reelection efforts. Good job.

    April 5, 2011 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
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