Reid labels Gingrich 'presumptive' nominee
December 14th, 2011
01:31 PM ET
11 years ago

Reid labels Gingrich 'presumptive' nominee

(CNN) – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid singled out Newt Gingrich from the Senate floor Wednesday in a disguised dig at the current 2012 GOP frontrunner.

While arguing for a spending agreement to include an extension of payroll tax cuts, Reid invoked the candidate's previous life as speaker of the House.

"I think that everyone can see very clearly that my friends on the other side of the aisle obviously want to have the government shut down and as I've said before–I'll say again– they've had experience doing this," Reid said.

"The presumptive Republican nominee Newt Gingrich tried that once, it didn't work so well."

Gingrich has made no apologies for serving at the helm of a government shutdown in 1995 and 1996 as Democrats and Republicans squared off over balancing the federal budget during President Bill Clinton's second term.

"Everyone knows why the government is going to shut down, if in fact it does," Reid said. "We have 160 million Americans out there cheering for us, that we can get them the tax relief they deserve."

Reid argued the Senate should vote on a broad spending agreement to ensure that government funding continues after a short-term extension expires at midnight Friday.

- CNN Congressional Producer Ted Barrett contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Harry Reid • Newt Gingrich • Senate
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. The Real Tom Paine

    Angie Sharp, if Clinton's behavior was so vile, why are you giving Newt a pass?

    December 14, 2011 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  2. arthur

    @Mike It was clinton that caused the shutdown, it was partisan republicans who couldn't have cared less. Gingrich caused the shutdown due to his indecisive and irrational politics, not Clinton. CNN's facts are just fine.

    December 14, 2011 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  3. Dan

    I use the term ReDICKlicans but I like Rethuglicans even better!!

    December 14, 2011 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  4. Gurgi

    tom paine, I don't think she is giving newt a pass, I think she is merely pointing out the liberal hypocrisy.

    December 14, 2011 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  5. Dan

    I use the term Rediclicans but I like Rethuglicans even better!!!!

    December 14, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  6. Phil in KC

    I think Reid should have chosen his words a little more carefully. Frankly, I've never been a real big fan of Reid. He's not a Democrat's Democrat. And I don't think he's a good fit to the leadership position he holds. But, beats having a Republican in his Senate seat.

    December 14, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  7. Sniffit

    "there are plenty of other ways to pay for the tax cut but BO is obsessed with increasing taxes on the rich so he snuck it in the bill. "

    Why does it need to be paid for? When it came to extending the Bush tax cuts the GOP was all over the airwaves and MSM arguing that tax cuts were not "spending" and did not require any offsets whatsoever. Go ahead, look it can probably find the quotes from John Kyl the easiest.

    December 14, 2011 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    Angie Sharp wrote:
    Bill Clinton – two time DEMOCRATIC president!!!! WOW !! He is a poster child for everything vile a person can do as a "public servant" and married man.
    George W. Bush – He either lied to us or misled us into Iraq. His administration left us with an annual deficit of $1.5T and the worst economic recession in over 70 years.
    George H.W. Bush – His administration is infamous for its' recession, the Gang of 12, and the S&L Crisis.
    Ronald Reagan – His administration broke laws with Iran-Contra and served up Oliver North as a scapegoat.
    Gerald Rolle (all you can a) Ford – He pardoned Nixon and kept him out of prison.
    Spiro T. Agnew – VP to Nixon who was convicted in DE for bribery (or something) and jailed.
    Richard M. Nixon – Resigned in disgrace over Watergate within a year of his VP being convicted.
    Jimmy Carter – He could have been a baptist minister if he wanted, but his brother was beer lover
    Bill Clinton – the star of the show. played a hot sax.
    Barack Obama – family man, THE CHOSEN ONE,

    December 14, 2011 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  9. Sniffit

    "Reid labels Gingrich 'presumptive' nominee"

    He's right: Nertwered is a presumptuous jackhole.

    December 14, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  10. A Texan

    Angie, you are correct--– However, it`s the Republicans who always seem to profess to be devout believers and followers of God at every opportunity. The Democrats still keep church and state separated in speeches................. Yes, I`m a blue dog Democrat AND devout Christian................

    December 14, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  11. Yikes!

    I find it interesting that people that call themselves "truth" or "real american" and the furthest from the truth and tykl, President Obama didn't "sneak" the tax increases into any bill. He's been very clear of his position on taxes.
    Please try a little harder.

    December 14, 2011 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "Democrats won't cut spending to match what they take in and will not tax us to the level needed to fund the government because that would be very very high tax rates."

    Actually, we know what the level of taxes needed to fund the gov't are and were: the same rates as under Clinton. He handed Dubya a surplus. It wasn't until enactment of the Bush tax cuts, Medicare drug program changes and two wars for which no war tax was raised (for the first time in our history) that we started running deficits and magically blaming it on Medicare and Social Security and poor people.

    December 14, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    "Actually, Ronald Reagan was arguably the first conservative POTUS to aggressively put that strategy into practice by name. Bush succeeded because he was the first GOP President with a GOP Congress in six decades."

    I think you meant they GREW the beast. FIFY,

    December 14, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  14. Rudy NYC

    for Angie Sharp:

    Gong. Gong. Gong.
    While a person's character and morality of their behavior is important in judging a candidate for POTUS, it is not the only factor and nor should it be the only factor under consideration. Naturally, one must consider how well that person might handle a crisis, any crisis or a specific crisis. One critical issue that is currently on the minds of most people is the US economy. For that, let's use your morality criteria. Shall we?

    Republicans have had a controlling hand in the wheel of the budgets in the years leading up to every recession this country has seen for more than the last 50 years. By your standard, that would make them a bad and unsavory crowd to hang out with and not the type of people we would want anywhere near controlling the national budget ever again. Wouldn't you agree?

    December 14, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
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