Gingrich to gay man: Vote for Obama
December 21st, 2011
03:23 PM ET
10 years ago

Gingrich to gay man: Vote for Obama

(CNN) – Asked how he plans to engage the gay community in his bid for president, Newt Gingrich on Tuesday told a voter he wouldn't be the right choice for those basing their decision on the issue of same-sex marriage.

"If that's the most important (issue) to you, then you should be for Obama," Gingrich told Scott Arnold, a man who identified himself as gay.

"Okay. I am, but thank you," Arnold replied.

The comment ended a rather cordial exchange between the two at a campaign stop in Oskaloosa, Iowa.

Arnold, an adjunct professor at William Penn University, approached the former speaker, asking Gingrich how he would sway voters who disagreed with him on same-sex marriage.

"How do you plan to engage and get the hope of gay Americans and those who support them?" Arnold asked.

Gingrich replied saying he doesn't expect to get the backing from voters solely focused on changing the definition of marriage.

"And I accept that that's a reality," Gingrich said.

Gingrich has frequently taken a conservative line on the issue. Last week, he signed a pledge with the National Organization for Marriage, promising, among many things, to back a constitutional amendment defining marriage between a man and woman.

"On the other hand, for those for whom it's not the central issue in their life –if they care about job creation, if they care about national security, if they care about a better future for the country at large-then I think I'll get their support," Gingrich said.

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Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Newt Gingrich • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (554 Responses)
  1. Duck Duck Duck - GOOSE

    I have a special place in my heart for Republicans.
    Like the morning after i drank too much,
    and toss my cookies into the nearest toilet.
    Its called "PURGE".

    Anybody who votes republican is sick.

    December 21, 2011 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  2. Charlie from the North

    That's right Newt because as every narrow minded bigot knows: Gays are promiscuous and were they allowed to marry, a man might even do something as craven as cheat on his husband with another man maybe even while his first husband was ill and then he might go on to marry that one and have an affair with t a third that he would eventually marry. Thus making a total mockery of the institution of marriage. Man it sure is a good thing that fine upstanding :Fat Cats" like yourself to stand up for morality and keep the gays from ruining marriage. Thanks Newt.

    December 21, 2011 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  3. JJ

    Sorry to break the news to you, Newt, but EVERYBODY has already decided to do just that. LOL!

    December 21, 2011 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  4. Duck Duck Duck - GOOSE

    Republicans : I will give you two roads and a bridge.
    Democrats : I will take two roads and a bridge.
    Republicans : We dont want the democrats to look good....mmmmm
    Republicans : You get one road, one bridge, and you have to give me more.
    Democrats : What more do you want ?
    Republicans : Everything !
    Democrats : We will not give you everything.
    Republicans : SEE, The democrats wont work with us,
    Democrats : Obama wins 4 more years.

    December 21, 2011 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  5. MaryM

    You are done Newt. You will NEVER be POTUS.

    December 21, 2011 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  6. Same Old Politics

    If you are serious about saving marriage then keep the old two-time cheating divorcee away from airport restrooms!

    December 21, 2011 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  7. nadine

    It is about time that some courageous person running for office tell those psychologically disturbed people namely: gays that they are abnormal and that their demands are unimportant to the vast majority of Americans. Hail Gingrich !!

    December 21, 2011 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  8. hank

    So he is telling gay Republicans not to vote for him. I bet that he tried to take this one back

    December 21, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  9. gg

    -if you want a middle class-vote for obama

    December 21, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  10. Dr. Wendy

    Newter is the poster-child for "HYPOCRISY"! The latest ad with his bimbo wife in their expensive clothes and perfect hair, wishing Americans "Merry Christmas", is a slap in the face to the middle class that SELL clothes to them, DO their hair, and MAKE their meals!! He protects his own interests and those of his cronies, the 1%. But what they FAIL to understand is that if the middle class don't have money to spend they won't be supporting THE corporations they work so hard to protect.

    December 21, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  11. muse

    "I like your Christ. I don't like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ" ... Mahatma Gandhi

    December 21, 2011 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  12. PDXSerric

    You have to respect Newt for his honesty and candor on the issue. He could have went with typical politi-speak and he didn't. Kudos. However, way to even further divide an already fractured base!

    I support gay marriage as I see no constitutional reason such an event should be made illegal. At the same token, no law should be passed which attempts any religious entity to acknowledge or perform same-gender marriages. Constitutionally speaking, there is NO reason why two members of the same gender should be disallowed marriage. None. Granted, each state can hold a vote to amend their individual constitutions, but on a federal level, no.

    To my friends in the gay community I can only offer this: if you want to have your rights protected and end the discrimination based upon orientation, you MUST fight to amend the 14th amendment to include orientation discrimination as illegal. You have a powerful community but save the "gala style" pride events and get back to the methods of Harvey Milk – marching in normal attire to demand that the wold sees the gay community as 'any one of us'. The current practice of what pride has become only serves to further that wedge between gays and straights. Be proud. have your day. But be smart about it.


    December 21, 2011 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  13. BL

    First off, it's not gonna be a problem, because fat boy will be hustling books back in Georgia in no time flat. Secondly, nobody gets to vote for president. We don't actually have the basic democratic right to directly vote for our national leaders since we live under the tyranny of the electoral college.

    December 21, 2011 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  14. Jo nathan

    Awesome! A politician with the balls to say what he him or hate him, it is nice to hear a dominant voice.

    December 21, 2011 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  15. stefan kosof

    Same sex marriage is not a very important issue compared to Jobs, environment, education etc.

    December 21, 2011 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  16. Jo nathan

    Awesome! A politician with the confidence to say what he him or hate him, it is nice to hear a dominant voice.

    December 21, 2011 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  17. phelonius_munk

    if you have a little church and a little congregation and you want to have a little ceremony b/w a man and a woman and call it marriage, i could care less. there is intended to be a separation b/w church and state however, and for that reason, any benefits provided by law for civil unions should be available to people of the same sex as they are to opposite sexes. i respect the Newt's answer for being straight forward and honest. if he would just be honest about his other ideas i think he would succeed in getting soundly thumped in the upcoming primaries.

    December 21, 2011 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  18. sarahH

    Because marriage and marriage vows are so very, very sacred to Newt. Geez.

    December 21, 2011 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  19. lastmile

    I don't agree with his stance on gay marriage (and would probably think any argument he has against it is nonsense) but it was a good answer. He doesn't support it and he's not going to. But if you think other issues are more important and you think he's qualified to deal with them then you'll support him anyway. I don't think many people actually WILL but that's not the point...

    December 21, 2011 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  20. Latina CA

    Good for you Newt...I didn't care for you as a "person" of character, but your intellect is very impressive, but now I respect you. Say it like it is Newt!!

    December 21, 2011 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  21. Pat in IL

    Proving once again that he doesn't realize that the president leads for the good of all Americans.....not just the far right idiots.

    December 21, 2011 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  22. Newt the real deal!!

    That's he best answer ever!! newts the real deal he calls it as it is ie on your face!!!

    December 21, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  23. Gweilo

    Reality TV at its finest.

    December 21, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  24. TeaPartyIsForLittleGirls

    We should add an amendment to the constitution to support marriage. It should ban divorce. Once you marry, you are stuck, whether rich or poor, in sickness and health etc etc.

    Do you know how many marriages it will save.

    December 21, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  25. commontater

    I'm not a fan of Gingrich but he gave an honest answer to the Arnold's question. Maybe Arnold was fishing for a PC, pandering answer but he got what we should more frequently get from politicians, a direct and true response.

    December 21, 2011 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
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