Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue when it comes to African Americans?
January 17th, 2012
04:00 PM ET

Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue when it comes to African Americans?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Newt Gingrich is clueless when in comes to African-Americans. So writes Peter Beinart in a pretty tough Daily Beast column using Gingrich's own words from last night's Republican debate as proof.

Before we start here, keep in mind this debate was held in South Carolina on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Juan Williams, who was one of the moderators and is black, asked Gingrich whether some poor and minority voters might be insulted by his comments, as when Gingrich said poor kids lack a work ethic and black people should be instructed to demand jobs, not food stamps.

Gingrich, a native Georgian, pretty much dismissed the question as the crowd applauded. So Williams tried again, asking if Gingrich's words aren't belittling to the poor and blacks.

Williams: You saw some of this reaction during your visit to a black church in South Carolina, where a woman asked you why you refer to President Obama as "the food stamp president." It sounds as if you are seeking to belittle people.


Gingrich: Well, first of all, Juan, the fact is that more people have been put on food stamps by Barack Obama than any president in American history.


Now, I know among the politically correct, you're not supposed to use facts that are uncomfortable.



Gingrich finished this exchange with a standing ovation from the mostly white crowd.

Beinart writes what is fascinating here is that Gingrich is not a racist and he believes the former house speaker genuinely cares about black poor people. Beinart suggests Gingrich's problem is ignorance. Suggesting blacks and their leaders don't consider jobs important shows how out of touch Gingrich is with African-American politics and the priority black leaders have put on jobs.

What's more - and this is probably the worst part - Gingrich doesn't get why calling Obama the "food stamp" president is highly offensive to blacks, given the history of blacks in this country.

Beinart writes: "The most plausible explanation is that Gingrich inhabits a cultural and intellectual bubble. A bubble called the Republican Party."

That’s tough stuff - and not so encouraging for the Republican Party when it comes to getting black voters.

Here’s my question to you:
Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue when it comes to African Americans?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Newt has no clue. Mentioning black children specifically and linking them to "the poor" who receive assistance is biased and racist. It's a shame because if you just take out the black reference his ideas are almost viable. It will be next to impossible for the general black vote to overcome their view of Gingrich when they have President Obama to compare him to. That's a lot of votes.

Richard in Malvern, Pennsylvania:
Newt said nothing that should be construed as a negative to black Americans. We should all be treated as equals and if he is taken as a racist or insensitive, then the liberals are not being realists and are looking to play the 'race card' once again. If a job is available, take it, and learn from it; don't whine because you think it is beneath you. You will be a better person for it whether you are black or white.

Gingrich doesn't have a clue when it comes to anything other than his own precious self.

No, but neither does Obama.

Ray in Knoxville:
He's not talking to or for the black audience, nor does he care about them or what they think. He is talking to the white majority in this country and hoping that he can convince the large block of centrist independents to climb on board the fear wagon that Barack Obama's election created in the ranks of right wing white America.

Jayne in New Hampshire:
Anyone who makes $60,000 a pop for a speech and has a million dollar credit line at Tiffany's doesn't have a clue about 99% of Americans of any color.

Posted by
Filed under: 2012 Election • Newt Gingrich • Race • Race Relations
soundoff (188 Responses)
  1. David R Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    Jack,May I please repeat my prior Newt comment.Newt has no clue nor will he ever have a clue,because he is old old
    Washington.Same ole same ole different day.Newt's agenda is Newt period Jack.When he comments on black america
    its laughable.So no he has no clue Jack.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
  2. Mel - Houston

    He probably knew one once so therefore that makes him an authority on African Americans. There are thousands of books on the subject, but; Republican don't seem to have the time to read. They're creating jobs!!!

    January 17, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
  3. Pete from Georgia

    No, what he doesn't have is a desire to pander to them as has been the case in America for over 45 years........................and still NOTHING satisfies them. He sees this issue for what it really is, a total imbalance of government subsidy to them causing a never ending class and race division......................all by design.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
  4. Jk from Minnesota

    He's from the Red south, Jack. That says a lot to me about his thinking.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
  5. Kim , Dodge City, Kansas

    He appears to be balancing his alleged intelligence, with a profound lack of empathy for human beings, of any color. He represents the core right wing very well, indeed.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
  6. L.M.Boone

    NO, NO,NO, Newt claims to be such an historian, that it really shows that he still lives in the late 19th century! What was even more scary,was the boo's and applause that S.C showed the world on this televised event! We have really become a more seperatist nation than ever before. The display of race hatred South Carolina shared with the world, I don;t think we need to worry about 12/21/20012,for the end of the world, we won't make it that far!

    January 17, 2012 at 1:20 pm |

    He has MORE than a Clue, Jack. It is Media Pundits (like yourself) who keep putting words in Gingrich's mouth. Everytime he mentions "the poor" or people on "food stamps" you guys equate that to mean BLACK PEOPLE. Gingrich, just like any intelligent American knows there are more WHITE poor people on food stamps and welfare than blacks. The people who need to get a CLUE are the media talking heads. Hint, Hint.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
  8. Jim, Denver CO

    Newt Gingrich doesn't have a clue on anything when it comes to the average person in this country. It doesn't matter which minority group (or white majority) it is, Newt is owned by anyone (or company) that will pad his checkbook. He is the posterboy for the 1% elitists.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  9. Steve

    To tell you the truth I don't know, however with the issues this country faces I hardly think a candidate's status as to whether he's a card-carrying member of the NAACP has any edge over any non-black that respects civil rights.

    Bangor, Maine

    January 17, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
  10. Kevin SD CA

    Does anyone have a clue to African Americans? It seems that African Americans don't want to be defined!

    How about we levy a special assessment tax for or exemption for each individual of each race, religion, and creed for what they bring or don’t bring to civility!

    If the liberal race baiters were expecting more out of their own race, and or religions then maybe be would not have to ask this stupid question!

    January 17, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
  11. Avery Danage

    Newt has no clue about Jack or Jill, mentioning black children specifically and linking them to "the poor" who receive assistance is biased and racist. It's a shame because if you just take out the black reference his ideas are almost viable. It will be next to impossible for the general black vote to overcome their view of Gingrich when they have President Obama to compare him to. That's a lot of votes.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
  12. Herman Portland OR

    Yes the speaker does have a clue. He is taking a logical and simple approach. Keeping the topic simple may just work and we won't go broke trying to fix the problem by flooding the issue with our tax dollars.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  13. L.M.Boone

    No No and triple No.Newt should be gagged, he's always sticking his chest out ,about being such an historian,the fact is newt doesnt know anything about the present america! His comment was insane ,and South Carolina should be ashamed. The way they showed the world that racisim in alive and well in S.C. I now believe the Myans had the date wrong for the end, it should've been 12/16/2012 instead of 12/21/20012! I'm not surprised it was on Fox News!

    January 17, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
  14. joshua

    no, but neither does obama.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
  15. Doug Ericson

    Gee, the only thing I hear about African Americans these days, is that their unemployment rate is about double the national average. No one from either party seems to bring that up much. I don't know what Newt's position is on African American interest. I do know, that with a 16 trillion dollar National Debt for two loser wars, theres not much any Politician is going to be able to do for unemployment soon. Except declare National Bandruptcy and start over again. Why not? Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
  16. Kenneth in California

    No he doesn't care to have a clue.When it comes to African American's, Newt is just a reflection of many millions of people that reside in the so-called Red States. Our nation, where we have a hard time liking each other, has a long, long pecking order of those prejudiced against. African American's must be at the top of Newt's list, and sadly that doesn't make him unusual to be clueless in our not so, United States

    January 17, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  17. Bill of New Mexico

    Is Newt clueless–that intelligence.
    Recall when Newt was Speaker–the House was turmoil.

    Perhaps, Newt is clueless,
    but with Newt you have conflict.

    Tact and compromise–Newt is not.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  18. David in Tampa

    Newt doesn't have a clue about any American ( black, brown, yellow, red or white) that isn't making at least $250K. The reality sphere of most of us is radically different than that of Mr. Gingrich. The vast majority of people in this nation have good work habits and would gladly be productive citizens, but we burn out quickly as we struggle with day to day living in unrewarding jobs that are unrewarded. It is hard as hell to want to go in everyday just so somebody like Gingrich gets rich and the rest of us get, well something else.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  19. David

    Gingrich doesn't have a clue when it comes to anything other than his own precious self.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
  20. Greg in Arkansas

    Jack, your question..."Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue when it comes to African Americans?"
    MY question is........Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue?.....period!
    Mine is easier to answer and covers a lot more issues that affect most of the people he expects will vote for him.
    Newt is either clueless or cruel with his thought process and only cares about Newt and what's best for Newt......
    Americans, including African Americans are an afterthought.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  21. Tonyfrom Oakland California

    The two part assumption/stereotype Newt has made that African Americans are the predominate demographic collecting food stamps, and that welfare requires more funding than is actually funded for subsidies earmarked tio businesses, banks, realtors (redevelopment), and Coporate tax cuts within the Coporate structurting is astounding, as it is racially stereotyping. Subsidies is welfare for Businesses in much greater in dollars than welfare. Yet, for the poor, the GOP considers it a handout. The Anglo population statistically remains the biggest demographic collecting welfare. Yet, Newt is NOT seeking to have a conference with the Anglo community about Food Stamps/Welfare. His desire to rally his voting base is in such desparation, he must lie to rally the voting base within his Party.

    January 17, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  22. Jules from IL

    Newt doesn't even have a clue about Newt, so how could he have a clue about anyone else. He falls into my theory on empathy – if he hasn't experienced it, it cannot possibly exist.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  23. John from Alabama

    Jack: Newt the Hoot from Georgia is clueless about alot of things. No one wants the former Speaker of the House as President, because Newt shut down the government. Newt is a legal crook who paid $300,000 to stay out of the doghouse. Mr. Gingrich is very entertaining, and he lets the media have a field day. Newt probably believes Africian-Americans are visitors who will eventually go home. Newt is not in touch with reality.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  24. Eddie Carrasco

    Not only does he not have a clue, I believe he has completely disregarded the african american vote to appease the demograph of indiviuals who truly believe the cause of our economy woes is welfare itself.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  25. Peg from NY

    Newt is clueless about African Americans. What an embarrassment he is to himself and his Party.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  26. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    Newt's cluelessness doesn't stop with African-Americans. Newt's clueless with most Americans and it only gets worse for him beyond our borders. Mellowing as you age doesn't apply to Newt.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  27. garrick

    yes he will get a large vote from the grave Jack. that's how much he know about the black community.and you know his wife is scared to even go close to the black communities to speak.the boggie man might get her. LoL

    garrick turner , clearwater,fl

    January 17, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  28. tom bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    It's not just African/Americans. Gingrich could raise the fur on Elmo. Ask Republican Joe Scarborough how popular Newt is with past colleagues in the Congress.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
  29. Greg McCarthy

    Jack, Just Newt? Seriuosly??? My answer would be d) All of the above candidates do not have a clue about African Americans. Greg M. FL

    January 17, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  30. Oliver El Paso, TX

    The day President Obama was elected, Newt Gingrich and all of the GOP, have no clue when it comes to African Americans, Mexican Americans and all the other minority they think they should all go back were they came from. Just look at GOP in congress they say it out loud they doing everything can to destroyer Obama, the only people they are hurting is the black. brown, yellow American citizen! What are they going to do about Mitt Romney who is a Mexican American because his dad was born Mexico????????????

    January 17, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
  31. RickFromDetroit

    I don't know, Ask Reagan!

    January 17, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  32. Jenna Roseville CA

    Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue when it comes to African Americans?

    None of the Republicans have a clue about African Americans. They have spent the past 3 years trying to disenfranchise their ability to vote in the upcoming elections and in Michigan the white Republican governor has disenfranchised ALL in his state regardless of race – though only attacking the "black" areas in the state.

    Republicans have pitted rich against poor, minorities against whites, and Christians against ALL other religions.

    And they call themselves Compasionate Conservatives. Give me a break.

    Roseville CA

    January 17, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
  33. Yusuf Johnson

    Newt holds onto that view that blacks are a monolithic race that is sitting on the floor at the knee of any Democrat waiting for crumbs to fall to the carpet. He seems to ignore the fact that hard work and determination is not something foreign to blacks and that we simply want to be afforded the same opportunities as everyone else. If his 19 year old divorced mother had not married the army officer who adopted Newt, maybe he would have learned that sometimes being from a single parent broken home is not the best platform for speaker of the house.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
  34. Jayne in NH

    Anyone who makes $60,000 a pop for a speech and has a million dollar credit line at Tiffany's doesn't have a clue about 99% of Americans of any color.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
  35. Richard C.

    Newt said nothing that should be construed as a negative to black Americans. We should all be treated as equals and if he is taken as a racist or insensitve, then the liberals are not being realists and are looking to play the 'race card' once again. If a job is available,take it, and learn from it; don't whine because you think it is beneath you. You will be a better person for it whether you are black or white.
    Malvern, PA.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
  36. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    As a African American I watched Newt during the Clinton presidency/administration and noted that he is a shrewd hypocritical historian. He knows full well what he is saying and that African Americans will find it offensive, but he is doing what ever he can or has to do to appeal to people in the south that share his opinion but afraid to express it publicly. He is also gambling on African Americans long history of forgiveness. He is betting that come the General election he can simply apologize and offer a statement of clarification and all will be forgiven. I will remember that this highly educated man knows full-well more white folks are on food stamps than any minority in the country and that there are more poor white folks than any minority in the country yet Newt only identified African Americans with both these programs.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  37. Mr D

    Newt doesn't have a clue- period. He should get a job tending to the government archives. He thinks he has all the answers. Let's see if they match up with reality.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
  38. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    Newt epitomes the taking of the Black vote for granted and is clearly showing his disdain for the African American citizens of this great country. He could never represent the best interest of all Americans as prescribed by the U.S Constitution and subsequently is not worthy of being President of these United States.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
  39. Brad, Portland, OR

    Newt thinks he's being helpful by telling them to pull themselves up by their bootstraps instead of expecting the government to help them with affirmative action and other government aid. He's advising them NOT to embrace victimhood.

    Newt isn't being PC, and his advice isn't going to be welcomed by the black community, but what he's saying isn't too different from what Bill Cosby has said in the past.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
  40. Paulette from Dallas,PA

    Newt doesn't have a clue about what ANY of the American People Want or Need.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
  41. Michael "C," Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: Newt Leroy is "clueless" on just about everything!

    January 17, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
  42. Ray in Knoxville

    Hell, Jack, he's not talking to or for the black audience, nor does he care about them or what they think. He is talking to the white majority in this country and hoping that he can convince the large block of centrist independents to climb on board the fear wagon that Barack Obama's election created in the ranks of right wing white America.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
  43. TS in AZ

    Do any of the republican candidates, really? Does any ‘white’ Politian?
    But honestly many of his comments have been taken out of context. I am a young, ‘affluent’ Caucasian professional and I worked many days in my elementary school cafeteria for free lunches. Cleaning trays, putting tables away, sweeping, and such was neither degrading nor insulting. And in my opinion MANY children lack work ethic and would benefit from such a program, including ‘affluent’ children.

    January 17, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  44. Wilhelm von Nord Bach

    just Newt Gingrich, Jack? seems to be the whole Republican Party. why ANY Black or Hispanic American citizen would EVER vote for these birds is beyond me.

    AND you can ALSO add ANYONE that works for wages or is retired on Social Security and Medicare too. WHY would you vote for ANYONE that want's to STEAL from you?

    January 17, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
  45. Gordo from NJ

    Newt's constituency is white male Americans with obedient wives. Like Rush Limbaugh, he really doesn't have a clue about how to talk to anyone else.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
  46. Jim, Cranford, NJ.

    Newt Gingrich is proof that sometimes you should kill the messenger. No matter how sound your idea may be people do not want to be lectured like children, or even worse, like they are idiots. Packaging an idea in terms that are neither confrontational nor condescending would go a long way toward gaining the attention and trust of an African American audience. For an educated man who claims to be a historian; Mr. Gingrich should appreciate the African American experience and innate distrust of lectures from southern white gentlemen.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  47. Karl in Flint

    Your question would be even more appropriate if you left off the last six words. Newt Gingrich does NOT have a clue about anything.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
  48. K. Wayne

    Gingrich doesn't have a clue about a lot of things, poor people, working people, sick people, marriage, telling the truth, etc. The fact that he is even in the public spotlight is a testament to how low the bar is set for political candidates in this country.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
  49. Kevin in CA

    When it comes to Gingrich, I'm not sure this question should just be limited to African Americans.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
  50. Noel Sivertson New Mexico

    Newt Gingrich doesn't have a clue when it comes to Americans at all. There is only one world where Newt is concerned, his; and all others be damned. The only thing I would vote for Newt for is entry into the con man's hall of fame.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  51. Bra

    if he did, he would learn to keep his mouth closed. memphis tn.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  52. Pete from Florida

    People as arrogant as Gingrich usually don't have a clue about ANYTHING except their own needs and desires. Strange how lots of media folks sem to that think he's really smart – if Newt was smart, he'd realize how his words and arrogance nauseate most Americans. The only way I'd ever vote for Gingrinch would be to vote him "off the island".

    January 17, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  53. Debbie Loganville Ga

    Jack- Newt is a White good old boy with foot in mouth disease and does not even know how racially decrementing he sounds. This is because he and all his friends talk and believe that way all the time and to think he could be our next President! How sad that would be.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
  54. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    All I can say is, it must be pretty scary to be a black person today in 2012 and have someone running in Republican Party presidential race like Gingrich. I swear this country is going backwards. We are not only becoming a nation of rich and poor but we are also going backwards in race relations. I cannot help but think by some of the racist statements Gingrich made that he does not care for blacks. I wonder if this man even listens to himself? I am a white man and I'm offended.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
  55. Toni

    Jack, it does not matter if he has a clue or not, it plays down here in this ass backwards state. I have lived here for many years and trust me, he is probably saying what these people want to hear; clue or no clue!

    South Carolina

    January 17, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  56. Steve

    Gingrich has a clue. It's the press that doesn't have a clue. Gingrch tells the truth, what is wrong with that? Sounds like Juan is trying to twist the facts/intent, which is typical with Liberal reporters.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  57. Dan from Stewartstown PA

    As a fat, old white guy, I can honestly say, YES, Newt is clueless when it comes to African Americans. As a leader in a major consumer products company, I've dealt with black employees from inner city backgrounds who've not had the educational nor social advantages as I have. However, I make it a point to never talk down to anyone, no matter how unskilled or uneducated. I try to break thinks down to the lowest common terms and then build the capability of others. Let Newt witness how many inner city blacks leave home at 2:30 AM to take multiple bus transfers to arrive 20 miles away at 6:20 AM just to work in a factory for little more than minimum wage, then leave at 2:30 PM to travel to a 2nd job to support their family as best they can. This is one old, fat, white guy (a Republican, by the way) who won't be casting his vote for Newt.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:31 pm |

    To answer the question, he doesn't have a clue. I am an African American, and when I heard him say that union janitors should be replaced by children, because the children never see people going to work, making an honest living, this is the scenario I pictured: The janitor is the breadwinner of the family. He must quit his job, and allow his 13 and 14 year old children to volunteer to clean the bathrooms up after their friends, because of course, their parents don't work, and have resulted to street pharmacy. Then he can depend on Public Aid because his child is now doing the work he did to bring in a paycheck. Pretty much sums it up.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
  59. Rob in NC

    I would say that none of the people running for office have a clue about "the poor". That includes Obama and Cain, because I don't think color has anything to do with it. The folks running for office have been so far out of touch from "Average/poor America" they have no idea what we go through from day to day. Some may have "grown up poor" but that was light years ago and many dollars ago. Rob in NC

    January 17, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  60. Olga O. Pina

    Newt is an angry, resentful human being. Ironic that we are still discussing race a day after Martin Luther King's Day. As long as people like Newt continue their greedy lifestyle and shamefully defend it, I am afraid this is going to be like a cancer until it kills Martin Luther King's dream for America.

    Olga Pina
    Austin, Texas

    January 17, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  61. Cy Gardner

    Are you really this clueless? Newt is not speaking to all of us. He is speaking to the idiots who watch FOX. Republican politicians routinely say one thing to real journalists and then go and say the exact opposite to their right wing base. They know that FOX, like the GOP, draws much of its support by pretending to hate the people their audience hates. Racist rhetoric goes over big with rural, poorly educated, narrow minded, gullible, OLD, white people. That's the FOX audience and the base of the GOP. How can you be so shocked, SHOCKED!!, that Republican candidates say stupid things to appeal to stupid people? They have been doing it on your air non-stop for months. cy from arlington, va

    January 17, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  62. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Politics is a nasty business and is about perceptions. As far as my perception of the GOP is that they are mainly the party of rich whites who mainly care about being rich and have made an art of using the fear card and really deep down don't care about the middle or low class regardless of color. Wake up Americans, the reason we're seeing so many people on food stamps, white, black, hispanic and all others is the GOP wants to destroy the American dream.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  63. Bert from L.A.

    Hi Jack, as a lawyer for poor child victims in LA’s dependency courts I know that intense therapy sometimes fails to get a child to see that the insult and pain they feel is not their fault because it is not the responsibility of a child to provide for himself. Gingrich is like Andre Bauer who also pandered to a South Carolina Republican group saying it’s bad to feed needy kids because they will breed becoming a culture of dependents “because they don’t know any better.” Bauer, Gingrich and those appluding them need a kick in the pants!

    January 17, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  64. Sylvia from San Diego

    On the contrary. Newt is telling blacks, whites and who ever else is on foodstamps that this President has made them dependent on the government. I agree with Newt and his message that unless we learn how to fish, we will continue to be dependent on the government. The Obama administration wants us to believe that they care but in reality, they are turning many people into "victims" with our hands out. We can not afford another 4 years of the Obama policies.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
  65. BILL, WI

    The article is spot on, with one caveat. Newt, and the Repub party, do not have a clue what it is like to be a ...Poor American. It does not matter if we talk about American Indian, Asian American, Black American or White American, Newt and others in his party do not now what it is like to a Poor American. The party of maximize profits at the expense of a worker, does not care if wages are kept low or health benifits cut if it is done to keep their rich contributors lifestyle secure. The attitude of the crowd at the debat last night summed up the disdain they had for the poor.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  66. Larry -Denver

    Just alter your question- Is Gingrich clueless-PERIOD- YES. Its not just minorities, its everything and anything. Down the one way street the wrong way insisted he is right. Newt, call it a day (or call it a night)

    January 17, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  67. Paul - North Carolina

    Newt is no more and no less clueless than the other people on that stage. They are all Republicans which, by definition, means out of touch with reality. And the more conservative a particular candidate is the more out of touch he is as well. Not one of them will tell you that the real reason more people are on food stamps than ever before is because George Bush and a Republican Congress destroyed our economy. They all deny the overwhelming scietific evidence of global warming. They all think we can eliminate the national debt with spending cuts alone. And worst of all, they all think they have what it takes to be president.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  68. Cy Gardner

    Black people are not a factor in the GOP primaries. Ergo, Newt doesn't care what they, or you, think about his insults. He is speaking to one audience and he doesn't care what eavesdroppers outside that demographic think. Black people won't buy his next book. Neither, I bet, will you. Black people won't pump up his ratings when he returns to FOX in a couple of months. Neither, I bet, will you. For months, Newt and the other Republican candidates have pandered to people who refuse to believe: the President of the US was born in the US; that global warming is happening; that evolution has happened; or that you can't balance a budget by increasing spending and cutting taxes. These people have their own irrational reality. All kinds of stupid things, including racism, make sense to them in that world. cy from arlington, va

    January 17, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  69. Dave, Orlando, FL

    Probably not, but even if he did, he wouldn’t care that much. Whether or not Beinart was right, Gingrich was playing to his audience. What he is clueless about is that these days, like it or not, his audience is global.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
  70. NHG CC TX

    The reaction he got from the audience just fueled his fire. He is like a little kid who is misbehaving, he is getting negative attention, but at least he is getting some attention. The man is clueless about most things why should we be surprised about this. Shouldn't he be gone already?? Come on Newt bow out. Too late to do it gracefully, so really just GO!!

    January 17, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  71. Ed from Texas

    No, he knows exactly what he's doing. He ignores the fact that more white people are on food stamps than African Americans or Hispanic Americans. He's just continuing the "Southern Strategy," by appealing to the racist wing of the Republican party. Like someone once said, "Not every Republican is a racist, but if you're a racist then you are probably Republican."

    January 17, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  72. Ed from Texas

    Remember his audience, Jack. These are the descendants of the people who started the Civil War.

    January 17, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
  73. Mark

    If you want to keep getting government handouts, vote the People's Democratic Plantation Socialist Party. Your check is in the mail.
    Mark in BC NV

    January 17, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  74. Chandler in Rockaway, NJ

    Newt knows exactly what he is doing - pandering to the fundamental racism of the Republican right wing.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
  75. Loren

    Not sure that Gingrich has a clue when it comes to people period, but Gingrich is an historian and he is well aware that the Democratic Party has used "plantation" politics to obtain votes from the poor, traditionally focusing on government handouts rather than job creation. Gingrich may not know how to say things in a way that many black Americans would appreciate, but he is speaking the truth.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  76. Larry in Houston

    Does Newt Gingrich not have a clue when it comes to African Americans?

    Jack –
    As far as a debate being held on MLK Day – that's a non-issue, because the Democrats done this, the Last election cycle. IF the "Newter" becomes the nominee, ( which is highly doubtable he will be) He will be hearing the "food stamp" exchange – all the way to the election, and he will forever regret it, for the rest of his life, in my opinion. IF the Republican party wants to keep Obama IN for another 4 yrs. – All they have to do is have the "newter" take the nomination. I can tell you, IF I was a republican, I would rather have Romney as my President, than I would have the newter. At least I could honestly look up to Romney, and have a little bit of respect for him, compared to the newter. Can you imagine, if I was trying to bring up my kids, and saying to them, take a good look at your president, see what he's done ? and take a good look at his history, can you see why we are proud to have him as our President ? ( I couldn't tell my kids that, if newter was our president)

    Larry in Houston

    January 17, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  77. JIm (Colorado)

    I think Newt's biggest problem is that his mouth is always about a mile ahead of his brain. There is nothing he could say that would suprise me. Sounds like just something we need in the presidential office. Thank God he has no chance.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  78. Ed from Texas

    Newt is not clueless. He's an historian. He knows the South used to be Democratic until desegregation of the 1960's and those who opposed desegregation became Republican. He's knows he has to make these racist comments to get their vote.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  79. Dave Laguna Niguel, CA

    Jack, The problem is that African-American politicians and black leaders TALK a lot about jobs but the don't DO anything about it. Unemployment among blacks has consistently been significantly higher than the population as a whole and has been since Lyndon Johnson's Great Society legislation in the 1960's. Trillions of dollars have been spent (wasted) and nothing has changed. They don't have to agree with Newt, but I would think they would be happy someone is raising the issue in the debates. Instead of criticizing him I would like to hear their solutions.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
  80. Gigi Oregon

    Newt is the best example of the Republican Party. He is not really fat ...he is just full of hot air...The Republicans have written their own bible and and asked god to bless it. The rich young ruler asked Christ how to inherit everlasting life and was told "sell everything and give it to the poor..." No matter their color...

    January 17, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  81. Gail, Plano TX.

    Wirhout a doubt, Jack. And I do think he is a racist. But the baggage he totes around bespeaks a man of low moral character. I am not surprised at all that racist has been added to his dossier.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  82. Nancy, Tennessee

    At one time the blacks may have been the majority that received food stamps and welfare. With the rise in unemployment and underemployment, other groups have had to join the line to receive a hand up. Newt doesn't know who is needy. You don't meet many of them at Tiffany's.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  83. Jenny from Nanuet, New York

    No-Gingrich knows exactly what he's saying. He's just saying what his fellow racist Republicans want to hear-that Black people don't work (unless it's illegal like being a pimp,, hooker, or drug dealer), don't WANT to work, and enjoy living on welfare and food stamps. He just doesn't CARE about Black people and doesn't feel "the rest of us" should have to "pay for" their expenses-starting with President Obama and his family.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  84. Mary

    Poor Newt doesn't seem to know much about whites either!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  85. phil, georgia

    I was just starting to pull for Gingrich to beat Romney; but when they intentionally FEED racism, its a complete rage that's felt considering Americas past and the progress that's made and these candidates have the audacity to light the keg just for own personal advancement. Hillary and Bill did the same thing, Santorum; when they need a surge they try to appeal to the old tried and true racism. Even more, these are people running for the highest office on earth and look how they would try to rule. And these are some of the same people who will say there is no more racism because Obama was elected. They will say there's no need for affirmative action; if a person like Obama can Scowcroft what he has achieved and still be stereotyped and blocked from leading fully, then just imagine what other minorities whose less gifted goes through . It's just unfair that blacks have to brace every election for which candidate is going to start to loose and start being racist. None of them never make a mistake and talk about "white trash" or the low problems in the white community but blacks will surely be talked about. Racism after the second or third time should be a deal breaker......they should be forced into sensitivity training.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  86. Renee Peoria,Ill

    Fact: the economic crisis that put so many people on unemployment and food stamps was caused by the last administration, not the current one. Fact: the majority of people collecting food stamps are white. Of course, these are facts Mr. Gingrich doesn't want to admit to himself, God-forbid he should admit them publicly. Out of touch with African-Americans? He's out of touch with reality, in more ways than one. He arrogant, condescending and totally clueless when it comes to anyone who doesn't have a large bank account. All of which seems to be a prerequisite for running as a Republican these days. The whole party is out of touch with America at large.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  87. Curtis in Philadelphia

    Clue Jack? I think it was Colonel Mustard in the Parlor with the candlestick. Otherwise I just don't get it.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  88. Jim-Charlotte NC

    Gingrich isn't alone in his thinking. Today Rush Limbaugh attacked Juan Williams during his daily attacks on anyone who doesn't believe in his radical agenda. Then there is Mike O'Neal, Kansas speaker of the house in Kansas who called Michelle Obama "Yomama". Don't forget the insults yelled at Black members of Congress at a Tea Party rally in D.C. Racism is alive and well even though among Conservatives even as they try to take credit for the Civil Rights Legislation in the 60's

    PS Gingrich is not a native of the South.He was born in Pennsylvania just like Santorum who suggested he was tired of the Government using his money to feed and house Black people.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  89. Annie, Atlanta

    Thank you, Jack. Finally a newsperson with the guts to call this man out on blatant bigotry. It may be appealing to some in his base, but I find his constant harping on it offensive. The GOP generally has dropped all pretenses of common decency and honor since the election of an African American President. It’s not just a lack of understanding of the “other” on his or his party’s part, it's outdated small-mindedness. That some Americans think such small-minded people deserve positions as public servants is embarrassing. And from reading international publications, the rest of the world is noticing. Unbelievable.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  90. RickFromDetroit

    If you want to know where Newt stands, read the Reagan memoirs.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  91. Jeff In Minnesota

    Newt doesn't have a clue – period! Blacks, whites, Hispanics, pick your race. He thinks he's being a "straight talker" and cute. The electorate knows that he's clueless. And Newt thinks Romney is unelectable.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  92. Rex in Portland, OR

    Newt has a clue. He chooses to ignore the clue and pursue his fantasy that equal opportunity exists. Can't blame him, though, it is the way he was raised. He is no different than any of the other 4 clueless canditates competing for republican favor: denying the need for any and all assistance for the people by the people = nomination.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  93. Kathy Prendergast, Chesapeake, VA

    I'm sure it is true that more people are on food stamps since George W. Bush left office and left us with an economic mess. More on food stamps because they lost their jobs. Newt Gingrich needs to miss a few meals to know what its like to not have any money to buy foodl

    January 17, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  94. Jon from Tempe, Az

    I think New Gingrich means well but he just does not understand how he comes across when he makes a statement like that. He probably is using a poor choice of words to express his opinion.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  95. Annie, Atlanta

    To make such comments about our current President when this depression is the result of the two previous presidents shows pure ignorance on Gingrich's part. If he's as smart as he keeps telling us he is, it sure doesn't show. And as far as bigotry goes, if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck ... you know.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  96. Dede Mills in SC

    Oh Gingrich has a clue. Make no mistake about it. He knows that there isn't a thing he can do to appeal to minority voters, so instead, he is trying to appeal to racially bigoted voters. Looks like it's working out well for him.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  97. SCAtheist

    I live in Myrtle beach. Those comments work for most of the morons here.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  98. Jay Anderson

    Romney knows, but he doesn't care. Like a lot of other GOP candidates, he knows he stands more to gain by playing on whites fears than appealing to black voters.

    It's disgusting, sure. But given the GOP voting populace, it's also a pretty sound political strategy.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  99. dave in nashville

    He's a historian, thus he thinks in the past, not the future. Next question.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  100. Mark from Naperville

    Newt knew what he was doing, and Romney is laughing all the way to the nomination. Newt was pandering to the far right knuckleheaded contingent in the audience, and by doing so he alienated every independant you can think of. Romney had to be back in his hotel room laughing at what occured. Newt won the battle, but he lost the nomination right there (if he ever had a real shot). I actually like Mitt now, he at least wont be caught in that type of rhetoric.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  101. Joey

    Jack, Everyone needs to stop being so sensitive. Everyone seems to believe that if you're white and you say anything that hints you are referring to African Americans, you are a racist. Rarely barely survived the 2008 election when Barack Obama became President of the United States. Sensitive liberals need to stop scaring white people into speaking out against minorities. At least until minorities become the majority in government.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  102. John in Oklahoma

    It seems that his plan is to lose one vote to gain two. Might work! I am a dem and I hop he gets the GOP nomination. The debates will be priceless.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  103. deborah ballweg Seibert, co

    He is just like the majority of the rest of us. We are sick of "political correctness" and "victimology" Why should "food stamp president" be offensive to black people? The sooner they stop looking for insults, the better off they will be. There are a lot of white people and hispanic people on food stamps.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  104. Billy in Louisiana

    I think that most White Americans are clueless when it comes to African-Americans. I'm white and my best friend is a black man, I still don't pretend to know about issues that they alone seem to be dealing with. Seems like mostly grumpy, old white guys give them the biggest problems, looking and treating them like they are from another planet or something.(Sounds like the make up of Washington) My friend is just as normal as anyone I know and is more honest as a person as anyone I know. We all have something to learn from each other Jack.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  105. pad

    Jack Newt is not color blind .

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  106. William, in Georgia

    Do average African-Americans have a clue as to what level of commitment and work it takes to be successful in life. 1.graduate high school 2.married prior to having children 3.work

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  107. Edward

    Sounds like you have already answered your question, with the question, so why ask us Jack?

    January 17, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  108. vicky

    Gingrich is out of touch with reality and lacks respect for humanity. With such high unemployment, people need food stamps. A Democratic Country helps the less fortunate.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  109. OneTexan

    Gingrich has Open-mouth-insert-foot disease. If he gets the GOP nomination it's a sure win for Obama because Obama won't even need to solicit for the minority vote. They'll turn out in droves to make sure Obama is a sure lock for re-election. Gingrich is a bigotted jackass who isn't fit to hold any type of office, nevermind the presidency.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  110. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    As an avid historian, Newt has a clue on African Americans alright. He would have African Americans return to working plantations as slaves to teach them work ethics and if there are no plantations available, then those African Americans can work as janitors in the inferior schools that they attend.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  111. Mark

    Why is it when someone says something about too many people getting food stamps it is instantly a racist comment toward african-americans? I do believe food stamps are given to all races and ethnic backgrounds. I think it is the people that instantantly throw a race card that are the truley prefudiced people.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  112. Bermille

    He has no clue about poor people.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  113. Phil

    Funny, how CNN wont report on Obama's messes...because hes black.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  114. Chan

    Jack, not only does Newt and the Republican Party have a clue about Black Americans but their actions of late show thatt hey don't even care to have a clue. They get off on using the negative stereotypes about blacks to fire up their base. I used to have a great amount of respect for Republicans and their differences of ideas but now they utterly disgust me.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  115. Jerry

    Truth be told Republicans don't get (understand) African-Americans at all.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  116. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    My read on Newts perspective is that he is among a unique group (I would not cay "class") who becasue of their socio-economic milieu, one where power is the priority, not color, wherein they are beyond clues to the realities of the average and poor amonst the population because this group is politically correct, financially correct and worst of all, arrogantly correct.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  117. Connor

    Gingrich is playing the fear card as so many Republicans do masterfully. Him and other conservatives say these food stamp comments because they know their base will ignore the fact that the economy collapsed right before Obama took office, thus more people went on food stamps during his presidency. The fact is that these kinds of comments are belittling and insulting to the black community. What also should be addressed is that blacks aren't the majority of people in poverty, yet the GOP talks about them like they are. That title belongs to poor white rural citizens, who not coincidentally vote Republican...

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  118. Alan, Los Angeles, CA

    Gingrich does not have a clue, period.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  119. Maren

    Newt is most certainly NOT clueless regarding blacks. He is calculating that will get a lot closer to the GOP nomination by being "one" with his racist audience (their applause choices last night were appalling) and, if he gets the nod, his scintillating intelligence will enable him to win back the normal people. (In a pig's eye!)

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  120. Sue Larkin

    Newt not having a clue?? No, I believe that would be Juan W who has no clue. No more pity or sympathy from me. I had to work through school; so did my son; my husband started working like a man at the age of 12. I don't see ANYTHING wrong with asking people to help themselves before they receive help. Oh, I forgot again. Can't ask blacks to do anything because they're "special" for some reason. Have you noticed the street crews? They are mostly Hispanics....another group happy to work and make something of themselves. I wish I could have been there to join in the boooooing of Juan W.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  121. John Larsen

    Newt forgets to mention that George Bush and the Republicans created the poverty of food stamp users that President Obama was handed. The food stamp numbers are a reflection of Republican abuse of our government and economy rather than a reflection of the President's actions..

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  122. Cliff

    Clueless, clueless, clueless. It really is scary to think we have people that think the way he does in this day and time actually running for president, and that there are people that are supporting them.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  123. Michael Clark

    Newt is right. Yes the truth hurts and sounds ugly sometimes that's just the way it is. Newt is right about most things regardless if you agree with those things. WIC, and CIPS, and most other government entitlements are out of control in a country that is flat broke and in a great deal of debt.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  124. Charles

    Newt actually is very racist he grew up in Georgia during a time when whites thought they were superior he was raised with that premise his entire life. Being from the born in the South I was wise and left the south and never looked back.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  125. Dr. N. Stiggers

    Newt Gingrich does not have a clue when it comes to the situation of black people and he is not trying to get a clue. From the looks of things, he doesn't seem to want a clue.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  126. karen

    Really! Are you serious Newt couldnt find his way out of a box. He doesn't even remember filing for divorce from his wife. As for the food stamp comments. Lots of folks today are hurting. They are not proud to be on food stamps but they have to feed their families and it goes back to the Bush administration not Obama. Get real people.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  127. laurene w.

    Newt dont have a clue about african americans. he dont even have a clue about the garbage that comes out of his mouth. give him a mint.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  128. Arlene, Roselle, Illinois

    After watching and hearing from the Republicans I know now they are the party of only White people.
    Anyone want to argue this one?

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  129. Jim In Pittsburgh

    He is definately out of touch - as is most of the GOP.

    What we have been seeing is the culmination of the conservative movement's push for "idealogical purity" which limits them to primarly white people living in homogoneous rural and exurban communities. This is why we hear outdated terms like "socialist" and "hippie". Newt and his kind are not running for president of the US; they are running for president of Archie Bunker's neighborhood association. Pushing for such "purity" may be help conservatives in the short run, but long term it hurts the GOP and the country - a country becoming more diverse with people of various races, religions, nationalities and even sexual orientations.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  130. Shaun, Roanoke, VA

    Jack, Newt is just using "old-time" code to those people in America who actually believe this crock of bull. We already heard about removing janitors and spreading the jobs around to kids in school!! That pretty much defines what Newt knows about black people. However, I expected more from a guy named "Leroy"...

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  131. Andrea

    Newt has a clue...he's from Georgia. He knows he will not get a vote surge from the African American community in the primary much less the general election. What he can gain by these comments are votes from poor uneducated whites in the South. Now, I'm from the South, and this is hard for me to swallow, but being honest, there are STILL people here who tattoo themselves with confederate flags. Newt is desperate, and he's banking on acquiring votes in the South...what he is not calculating is the amount of poor uneducated whites who don't know what a primary is, much less know when to vote in one.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  132. James Dean

    Republican party members consider black people little more than pets; something to pat on the head and to be reminded what their station in life is. Gingrich is merely reminding the people what he thinks of us.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  133. Ted from Oshawa, Ontario

    Jack, Newt and others in the Republican party pander, much like prostitutes ( I apologize to prostitutes the world over), to their base or those from whom they think they can get what they want. He is of the misguided opinion that he does not need the minority vote to win an election and, as a result will do whatever it takes to win the republican nomination.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  134. Tim Sunderland

    Forget African-Americans, Gingrich doesn't have a clue about what's left of the middle-class or the poor. You can't expect a man who has a credit line at Tiffany's to be in touch. He has been tied to politics and big business too long. As for Obama putting more Americans on food stamps than any other president, that happened because of the ill-gotten policies of the previous president, and Gingrich knows it.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  135. Flyingwolf from Manchester, NH

    Not only does Newt not have a clue, Pop-n-Fresh's evil twin doesn't even have a map to get to the clue. He's living the dream–except it's a dream set in some white-bread fairy tale land.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  136. Anthony B.

    Newt may have a clue, however he is getting it from someone who is just as clueless. The racial divide continues!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  137. Jazziette

    It's obvious Gingrich has never missed a meal himself!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  138. antonio from las vegas

    his views cleary show hes out of touch the saying growing old is mandatory but maturing is optional rings a bell

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  139. brittany south carolina

    He doesn't care. None of them have taken the time to care. His lies don't appeal to me. None of their lies do.
    I am an African American college student in South Carolina and I don't receive help from the government. It is all stereotypes.
    Ron Paul 2012 !!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  140. Dooneygirl

    Jack, WHY doesn't anyone get it? Juan asked a racist question, first off. Then, as was appropriate, the crowd booed...BOOED AT JUAN'S QUESTION and NOT Newt. Come on.............and that's why the crowd cheered and stood up at the end: for Newt's answer. All he's saying is that work is work, not yet again interjectiong the poor me racial crap. Juan then brought up special help just for blacks w/$$. NO. We are all the same in this regard, NOT RACIAL issue at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  141. Ersula in Portland, Oregon

    The notion of a post-racial America tickles me. Everytime I hear the phrase: "We need to take our country back" I wish they would have the courage to finish the statement. Newt and his ilk are out of touch with the American people: Black and White alike.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  142. ed


    we need to move on, from this blacks and whites every time it's election time!! blacks,white and many more are out of jobs! we are all to blame! WE THE PEOPLE VOTED THEM IN AND WE THE PEOPLE HAVE TO SUFFER WITH IT! Move on!!!!!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  143. Ed from Colorado

    Newt doesn't have a clue about any of the difficulties many Americans are going through today. there are children in our country going to bed hungry, and Newt's working on his next million and the Tiffany's credit line and the next cruise. Oh, and by the way, Newt, many of these families are White!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  144. Martha Brooks

    All the GOP candidates are totally out of touch with our current economic reality. They are rich. And it ain't only the African-Americans who need those food stamps! I am a retired Norwegian-American on Social Security and literally could not survive without them! Bully for Obama and Phooey on the Repubs!
    Rew, PA

    January 17, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  145. Robert Corodimas

    Jack, have been a closet democrat all this time?? Or are just confusing facts with emotions?? Newt stated a fact and as he has pointed out – white people, are the biggest recipients of food stamps. I can understand a certain sensitivity but to suggest it was pointed at black people is as troubling as how subjective minorities are to how they evaluate issues. I voted for Obama based on what he promised – but he hasn't fulfilled his promise and in fact has mislead this independent!!! And by the way I was a minority!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  146. Mickey Mason

    Gingrich is an arrogant bigot without morals has not a clue about the common people, black or otherwise.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  147. Chad

    Liberals just love to play the race card. Pretty funny coming from a rich white American like yourself. African Americans want to prosper, they don't want to get handed food stamps. But I'm sure you have convinced your twenty-seven viewers that Gingrich is racist. Congratulations.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  148. Celia Sgroi

    Newt Gingrich still hasn't figured out why the President has acted to add so many Americans to the food stamps program. He doesn't yet know that millions of people have lost their jobs and can't subsist without help such as unemployment benefits and food stamps. Gingrich is ignorant because he doesn't care, whether a person is black or white.

    Oswego, NY

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  149. Derrick W in Los Angeles

    Of course not Jack. The entire Republican party is clueless about black Americans. But it's not surprising when Newt and the rest go out of their way to avoid black neighborhoods, to not address issues in our communities, to not help improve our schools, not bring jobs to our communities, they refuse to even campaign in our neighborhoods, and at every turn use code words to imply we are somehow less American.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  150. Marc A.

    Newt is so far off base it's almost comical. If it weren't for the Bush years we wouldn't be having so many middle class having to resort to getting welfare. Blaming Obama seems to be the only thing the republicans can accomplish. You can say Obama hasn't done anything but when you have to deal with g.o.p. who has a it's our way or no way frame of mind what else should he do. Should he support ideals and plans that hurt our old and poor? No way imho

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  151. Aldo

    New Gingrich has no clue when it comes to not just African-Americans but poor people in general. Newt Ginrich once said that he was "prepared" to tell the poor that "the habits of being poor don't work" and that they have to "learn new habits." Newt Gingrich is biased when it comes to attacking the lazy because he seems to think that laziness is only present in the underpriveleged and abused poverty class. So is it offensive when he attacks the poor? Yes, indeed it is. Why doesn't he mention the laziness in the upper class and suggest that children in adequately-funded schools also work as janitors in their schools? Or does he really think that upper-class children have better work ethic when their rich parents give them whatever they want since they have the money? Laziness exists everywhere, not just amongst the poor like the right-wing would like to beleive.

    New Jersey

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  152. Michael of California

    Jack I don't think he is a racist jerk, he's just an ignorant jerk. that's why no one liked him when he was house speaker.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  153. cenk

    I am a 54 white male living now in Alabama and with a disability. I am on disability benefits and have been trying to get a job. Newt has no idea how much discrimination there is not only blacks but also the whites, even those with advanced degress. All of the jobs are going overseas or we are being underpaid to work at resturants and so on.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  154. Ken in NC

    To Newt Gingrich, African American is only two words.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  155. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    I don't believe any of the GOP candidates have a clue when it comes to the African-American vote. They feel they can dazzle them like Obama did, and every time..they come up VERY short. Herman Cain was the only African-American that could dazzle, and now he's out...so unless they can conjure up another Herman Cain, then they have no chance.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  156. Earl

    No, simply no, and I am starting to think that none of the other REPUBLICAN'T canidates do either!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  157. Maria NYC

    Newt is clueless about anything that does not concern Newt.

    Therefore, he has been, is and will remain clueless about any experiences beyond the tip of his nose, that means not only what concerns blacks, but also women, Latinos, and others who are not like him.

    He will never have my vote.

    His picture should be the icon for "crooked politicians". Then again, that is a redundant statement. Isn't it Jack?

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  158. Jackie

    Gingrich is just telling it like it is.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  159. Ron

    Jack.... OMG When my daughter heard what Newt said she shook her head and walked away from the dinner table...stood at the front window and cried, shes 21. She asked me "why some much hate" please tell me she asked.
    I am a retired Police Officer....I have a retired Dr. ..A teacher...almost everybody on my block works and are very respectable, the homes are well kept, we are not rich or well to do but we live our lives peacefully and help one another when needed. So to answer.... Newt has no idea what goes on in a black community...come on Newt walk among us IT WONT RUB OFF I promise....you might even feel some love if you give love..
    Thanks Jack you are truly the man

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  160. Sly in Indiana

    Newt Gingrich is ABSOLUTELY clueless when it comes to African-Americans, as well as ALL average Americans! The suggestion that "those people" are unfamiliar with paychecks?... when they may work two or more jobs JUST TO GET BY??? And that their kids might learn something useful "cleaning toilets", rather than doing homework???
    He's a sick, deluded man.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  161. John

    Jack, As exemplified by the applause of the audience in SC regarding Gingrich's comment about food stamps and President Obama. it only shows how ignorant they are about the facts and how manipulating Gingrich is. The fact is food stamp users were on the rise when Obama took office because of the recession and rising unemployment so you cant blame him. I wish the american people would analyze the facts before they let their predjadice and stupidity influence their thoughts.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  162. Greg

    To suggest Gingrich is only clueless when it comes to his belittling remarks toward blacks and other minorities provides him way too much cover, Jack. Cluesless, like a child, perhaps? This a man who was the former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and he doesn't have a clue? No, I think to call him clueless is too generous and totally implausible. There's no other rational conclusion than Gingrich is racist, and we should not be afraid to call him on it, however "politically incorrect" that might be (to borrow his phrase).

    January 17, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  163. Larry, Topeka KS

    Newt shows just how out of touch he is. If he wants to speak the truth he would have said that because of the state of the economy that the president Obama inherited, more people are unable to make ends meet so they have applied for food stamp. It's the economy stupid

    January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  164. Vince Hugh Atlanta

    Jack, the applause for Newt is an accumulation of the unearned monies and sympathy given to blacks over the years without strong leadership and emphasis by black leaders to improve education, family marriage and male responsibility, criminal rate, and failure to place higher in educational standards after billions provided by tax payers with poor results. And whites are always blamed....the white audience has had it and an opportunity to get it displayed where it can't be spun since so many people saw it. Newt for president!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  165. Rose Dmytryk

    No, Newt is not clueless. He is right in referring to Obama as the "food stamp President" since more people have received food stamps than ever before. Is this what we want our country to become? A nation dependent on food stamps?? What is so offensive about calling him the "food stamp President"? Is it because he is black? If George Bush or any other president handed out more food stamps than ever before and he was called this, would people be offended?

    January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  166. Dave

    Jack, Newt is clueless about EVERYTHING.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  167. howard, So. Cal

    Always about race with liberals. Going to the race card is always the easy out they even used it on Herman Cain. This is not a race issue it is a work or freeloader issue. Look back at history Jack. In the Virginia Colonies they had the all are equal and deserve equal shares, then the lazy figured they could get the same amount for no work. What came from that was the famous quote "You don't work you don't eat". We need to get back to work ethic. I don't make alot of money but what I do I want to keep for me and my children not have it taken and given to those who do not work put want an equal share.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  168. Ann

    Since moving to NC and becoming a voter in all elections held, as we stand in line to vote we always hear people laughing and saying they have to get in there to vote, in order to get more free stuff while Obama is in the White House.
    It is upsetting but no election officials has stopped them from saying all this in the voting line. These people act like the circus has come to town and they sre giving away free rides inside. This actually happens in High Point, NC., so help me God....

    January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  169. Gemsruby

    I think Newt Gingrich DOESN'T CARE about understanding African Americans – he doesn't have to(!) – look at the response South Carolina's audience gave him. That's what he cares about. Too bad those fools standing don't know that yet. It always has been and always will be about Newt for Newt.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  170. Chris

    Gingrich does have a fundamental problem relating to poor black Americans. His penchant for hoof-in-mouth is nothing new. He grand-stands and constantly gets in toruble, much like Rick Perry. However, Barack Obama is also an elitist who also cannot assume the moniker of Poor Black Champion. Case-in-point? He jsut told his left-wing supporters they would be "dissapointed" in his budget becuase it does not focus on social programs. He cannot claim to relate to poor black Americans. I'd bet Rahm Emanuel has a better claim than the President to that moniker. The fact that he IS balck does not change his behavior as a pseudo-champion of the middle class. Newt is nothing more than a distraction, and the voters know it.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  171. Phil

    Jack, I can understand where the Speaker is coming from when he says what he does, however, I don't think it is politically correct when it comes to respecting the President of the United States. It seems to me that President Obama has withstood an enormous amount of disrespect from the Republican party moreso than any other president it seems. The crowd at the debate last night seemed to not want the fact that Black people find issue with the Speakers comments offensive. Well, I am black and I am an Independent but last night's booing of Juan Williams' questions is proof that not only is the GOP out of touch with the essence of Black people and culture, but the Speaker, with his intellect, still will never understand what it is Black people are trying to achieve. Here's to our post-racial society.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  172. peggy


    Newt does not need to have a clue. After all he is addressing Republicans. Need I say more? Yes, the crowd's response is embarrassing, truly embarrassing..

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  173. Jerome from Louisville

    Anybody receiving federal tax dollars is on food stamps. Gingrich is a walking food stamp. Gingrich has been living on food stamps since the day he was born. In my opinion Gingrich is a racist bigot who thinks blacks should all be janitors instead of collecting food stamps like he does.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  174. jandjdigitalmedia

    If the Speaker had a clue he would know that blacks make up 37% and whites 46% of food stamp recipients according to the National Urban League. He does not care as long as he can get the Republican base fired up when he makes those covert racist comments.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  175. s in fl

    Newt reminds me of Jon Lovitz' "Liar" character on SNL. He's never wrong, even when he knows he is. It's looking to me like the GOP is going to end up with a nominee somewhere between Mitt and Newt.....Mewt.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  176. Tylerin LA

    Jack...as an African-Ameriican it is you that I find offensive. There is nothing wrong with Newt Gingrich saying that he wants to create an economy where EVERYONE can have a job, get a better job and then own that job! Ditto for calling Barack Obama the "food stamp" president. History does not trump fact...accomplishment does. If Barack Obama has earned the designation "food stamp" president, the real racism is in people like you and Mr. Binert being too politically correct to call him exactly what he is. Stop trying to make an issue out of good policy based on equality!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  177. marcia

    Well, I would say that Obama is clueless about blacks too! He done absolutely nothing for them and has put them even further back on the burner!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  178. Michelle G.

    There isn't even one coherent response in this mess.

    I don't think he is a racist, I do believe he is a Historian and I also do not think that he is the right man for the job because we do not live in a "roll up your sleeves and work" post-Great Depression world and we are all far too concerned about the "me" in the equation.

    How did 90% of you miss the fact that he said "more people have been put on food stamps," and decided to instead decided to read/hear it as "more (insert racial epitaph here) have been put on food stamps?" You all are missing a lot, be it something that Gingrich or Paul or Santa is saying, all because you want an answer and you want it now. Life doesn't work that way, there are no band-aids; quick fixes; Monopoly money or fast ways to work things through.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  179. Joe

    Can we please just finish what the Civil War started? The Federalists can have half of the country, the Anti-Feds can have the other half. We will finally be able to see which ideology is correct. Unfortunately for the lefties, they will run out of money pretty quickly when all the population is on disability or teaching college poetry.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  180. ray

    Newt has more then a clue, he has an agenda of creating a cast system in America. He would be perfectly happy to have the poor stay poor, and do menial work while the rich go onto higher education and higher paying jobs.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  181. Dan

    C'mon jack,
    This is exactly why we never get anywhere with our policies. Everytime someone says anything remotely about poor people, the liberals scream race. He was talking about food stamps, he didn't say anything about black people. Foodstamps and Welfare are to help poor people and because of our debt we need to have a conversation about it. Black Americans certainly don't have a monoploy on being poor. But because of these types of reactions, we're here talking about race and not ideas.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  182. Michael Bindner, Alexandria, VA

    He doesn't have a clue when it comes to poor people as a whole. Seems a common comment.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  183. Carolyn DeWolfe

    Newt is more focused on the responses of his mostly white audience than any reaction to a black audience. His facial expression , with a slight sneer, as he said "juan" when he answered Juan Williams says more than his words.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  184. Dede Mills in SC

    You heard the crowd boo Juan (and chuckle at his ethnic name no less) and applaud Newt, didn't you? Clearly, Newt knows exactly what he is doing, and he is doing it very well.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  185. Hisham

    Gingrich is cluesless when it comes to african americans,muslims,Hispanics.....basically anyone who is not white ir christian.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  186. David

    I find it laughable that the Media thinks they can take what a candidate says out of context and add their own little spin to it. Newt is not a racist. He had just came from an ALL Black Church....If anyone is racist it was Juan Williams Fox News Anchor that tried to pull the racist card on Newt....He did not like it when it got reversed on him....Bigotry can go both ways my friend, and I think some people Hate their own Race.....

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  187. Tricia

    He has no clue. I am a upper income white older woman but we don't need another old white guy running the country.

    January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  188. Felicia

    If I really believed that White America, believes what Newt thinks about African Americans, I would move to Russia. Besides if he is supposed to be such an intellectual historian: he would give credit where credit is due. My Black ancestors through the slave trade generated $16 billion dollars for white American, I would say we have paid our due!

    January 17, 2012 at 4:30 pm |