January 26th, 2012
08:23 AM ET
11 years ago

Gingrich campaign admits error

(CNN) - Newt Gingrich's campaign admitted Wednesday night the former House speaker was inaccurate when he claimed his team offered several witnesses to ABC News to refute statements made by Gingrich's second wife in a controversial interview aired last week.

CNN Chief National Correspondent John King reported the campaign said it only recommended Gingrich's two daughters from his first marriage, who wrote a letter discouraging ABC to release the interview.

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Marianne Gingrich claimed in the ABC interview that her husband asked for an open marriage while he was having an extramarital affair with his current wife, Callista Gingrich.

"The story was false. Every personal friend I have who knew us in that period says the story is false. We offered several of them to ABC to prove it was false. They weren't interested," Gingrich said at a CNN debate last week.

In an interview on Tuesday, King pressed Gingrich on those claims, saying ABC News insisted no such witnesses were put forward.

Gingrich said ABC's defense was "just plain baloney."

"If they're saying that, then they're not being honest," Gingrich said. "We had several people prepared to be very clear and very aggressive in their dispute about that, and (ABC News) wasn't interested."

On Wednesday, however, the campaign conceded the candidate was wrong, both in his debate answer and in his interview with CNN on Tuesday.

R.C. Hammond, the campaign's press secretary, told CNN the only people the campaign offered to ABC were the speaker's two daughters, Jackie Cushman and Kathy Gingrich Lubbers, who make regular appearances for their father on the campaign trail.

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Filed under: 2012 • Newt Gingrich • TV-John King U.S.A.
soundoff (504 Responses)
  1. pchelp, Juneau, AK

    IOW, Gringrich lied & then 'defended' himself by accusing honest reporting of being lies. Great leadership qualities.

    January 26, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  2. tampa

    Let's see... not to be outdone by Clinton in adding multiple definitions for the word "is", Gingrich is redefining three words; lobbyist does not mean lobbyist when contact says so, "friends" means daughters, and "truth"... well he hasn't told us that yet

    January 26, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  3. Mark

    This guy lies as easily as we breath, and you want him to be president???

    January 26, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  4. Joel

    Is there a surprise here? Typical Gingrich..... aggressively and offensively deny the charge by impugning the reporter or the media. If Gingrich is the Republican nominee, the Republican Party will face historic losses as he brings other candidates down with him.

    January 26, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  5. sean

    If he's lying about THIS, then he'll lie about anything! Don't trust the amphibian!! Say no to the Salamander!!! Don't Vote Newt!!!!

    January 26, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  6. JonRob

    Where do you draw the line between being wrong and lying? I am sure Newt will clarify this at the next debate and go back on ABC to apoligize to John King.

    January 26, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  7. Catfish

    How about ABC was right

    January 26, 2012 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  8. Patrick

    Straight lied about it. No one is surprised – the only error was getting caught in the lie.

    January 26, 2012 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  9. Gerry Daley

    So Newtie lies again. Ho hum...

    January 26, 2012 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  10. Catfish

    How about that ABC was right oops

    January 26, 2012 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  11. Sparky Satori

    Newt Schrute LIED???? I am shocked! SHOCKED, I tell you!!!!

    January 26, 2012 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  12. Bob

    I believe much of what Mr. Gringrich says is "just plain baloney".

    January 26, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  13. Dave

    Well that isn't a mistake, it's a lie. Gingrich seems to have a penchant for re-making history in the context he prefers. Hopefully the voting public will see through this windbag who wants nothing more than to bully people into making him president.

    January 26, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  14. Steve King

    So Gingrich basically admits he was lying. Nothing new there really.

    January 26, 2012 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  15. clarke

    From where I stand this is a personal issue. I am not a Newt fan but, that is his business and his ex wife. Can't we get beyond this and get to issues of the United States. When two people leave a marriage, they both lie. Besides when he entered this race we already knew he was married three times. Let it go and just move on.

    January 26, 2012 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  16. Paul from Tampa

    It sounds like someone is a big fat liar.

    January 26, 2012 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  17. Miki801

    Well, with ethics violations,and stress adultery, these errors will just have to be forgiven. After all, Newt"s two daughters, (who were teenagers at the time), said that he was an honorable man. Of course, teenagers always know what is going on with their parent's love life. What a great canidate, our best and brightest.

    January 26, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  18. Boytjie

    So Gingrich lied. Again

    January 26, 2012 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  19. Ugly Pauper

    Does a Fib Newton which is the favorite cookie of the Tea Party, go well with all kinds of baloney or the "just plain" kind?

    January 26, 2012 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  20. gdubf

    This guys is such a false liar – said twice there, I know, but it was needed as an emphasis (double liar). A typical politician. An elitist rich guy himself that pretends he's of the people and understands the people. He hasn't a clue. He's such a hot-head too, I'd imagine we'd be thrown back into multiple wars. And from his tax statements, he appears quite the stingy person for such a rich guy, lacking in generosity & compassion. I will never vote for this guy. If it comes down to him & Obama, though I've always voted for Republicans in the past ... I'd rather vote for Obama.

    January 26, 2012 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  21. GonzoinHouston

    It isn't an error if you knew it wasn't true in the first place. It's called a "lie", and therefore, you are a "liar".

    January 26, 2012 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  22. Jim Bob

    I love it. After the way he went after John King when asked delicately if he had anthing to say, he came out full force. They need to open tonight's debate with the first question being about his ex-wife's allegations, and why he lied as he was thrashing on John King for asking a completely valid question in a professional manner. What a pig.

    January 26, 2012 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  23. K Black

    The headline should read "Campaign Acknowledges Gingrich Lied Repeatedly"

    January 26, 2012 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  24. dgk

    So the lesson is....

    If you're going to lie, lie big in front of a big national audience and then, only if you're absolutely forced, have some else admit the 'mistake' to a much smaller news market several days afterwards and hope it stays buried in the small arena.

    (Note that the headline reads "Gingrich campaign admits error" not that Gingrich lied twice in front of a national audience.)

    My question to my fellow citizens is this, when will we stop cheering because a politician says what we emotionally want to hear and instead applaud the politician who dares to speak the truth!


    January 26, 2012 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  25. Anonymous

    "the former House speaker was inaccurate" is just a polite way of saying he was lying.

    January 26, 2012 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
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