NMX: Gingrich Says Obama Like 'Teenager' With Debt

Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 11:11 AM

By John Bachman and Patrick Hobin

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The United States has “never had a president who behaved as much like a teenager as Barack Obama” by building up debt and spending the money of future generations, Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich told Newsmax.TV in an interview at the Republican National Convention.

America, Gingrich said, will wind up paying more interest on the debt than it will for defense.

“You know, we’ve never had a president who behaved as much like a teenager as Barack Obama," said Gingrich the exclusive interview.  “He’s running around with a credit card, spending our money, our children’s money and our grandchildren’s money building up a huge debt and if interest rates go up a bit at some point, we’ll end up paying more interest on the federal debt than we paid for national defense. People need to realize how a big a threat this is to our longer economic future.”

Story continues below the video.

The former Republican primary candidate is hosting a series of seminars at the convention in Tampa called “Newt U,” which he said drew over 1,100 people online on Monday. About 300 people attended the Newt University program.

Urgent: Does Paul Ryan Really Help Defeat Obama? Vote in Exclusive Poll

“I love doing this stuff,” he said. “I love solving problems and the combination of learning and teaching is a key part of solving problems . . . So it’s great for us as a party. It reminds people that we are a very broadly based, idea-oriented and solution-oriented party and I’m delighted that the Republican National Committee and the Romney campaign has been so enthusiastic in having us do it.”

Gingrich said he will speak Thursday night at the convention and will give a tribute to Ronald Reagan with his wife, Callista.

“People are going to find it a terrific reminder that Reagan and Romney facing Carter and Obama are actually in many ways very similar situations at this point and that the country made a very big choice in 1980, and we think the country will make a very big choice, again, in 2012,” he said.

Gingrich drew a sharp contrast between Reagan and Obama. Reagan, he said, “campaigned with the slogan, ‘Leadership that is working.’ He was positive about . . . America. He had a terrific record of job creation and America was back. Four years into Obama . . . he has to give us excuse after excuse.

"Somebody said that he started with, ‘Yes, we can’ and now his campaign slogan is ‘Why we couldn’t.’ That’s just pretty inadequate and tells you what a failure the Obama administration has been.”

He said he wasn’t surprised at the tone of the campaign because Obama has to stay negative to win.

“Obama cannot possibly slow down and have any hope of getting re-elected,” Gingrich said. “He has got to pile every ounce of negatives he can on Mitt Romney because if this campaign is on big issues and big choices, Obama’s going to be beaten very badly.”

When asked about the tea party’s success this year, Gingrich said the group “should feel pretty darn good this year. You look at Indiana’s results, you look at Nebraska’s results, you look at what just happened in Texas. There’s clearly a continuing, underlying momentum towards more constitutional government, less spending, lower taxes, more limiting power in Washington.”

He continued, “And, in a sense, it’s actually drawn the two parties further apart. We’ve become even more decisively the party of the Constitution and American exceptionalism. They’re becoming even more decisively a party of European Socialism and the welfare state. So, in that sense, the tea party’s had enormous effect on the whole tone . . . of American politics.”

He said although the parties are growing farther apart, compromise can still be achieved, much like Reagan was able to make happen.

“When Ronald Reagan won the decisive election in 1980, and we picked up control of the Senate by winning six seats by a total margin of 75,000 votes, in the House, where I was serving, we had a Democratic majority and Tip O’Neal was speaker,” Gingrich said.

“We had to get one out of every three Democrats to vote with us in order to pass anything in the House. But we didn’t do it by compromise; we didn’t do it by personality. We did it because President Reagan took a very powerful program, went to the American people and the American people convinced a third of the Democrats to vote with us.”

“And so, Governor Romney, if he does win this, is going to have  to pick his fights carefully, make sure they’re very popular."

Gingrich said Romney’s and Ryan’s speeches will be critical, but he said Ann  Romney’s could equally important.

“There are three speeches that really matter: Ann Romney, who I think will humanize Mitt, put his family in context, give you a sense of who they are; Paul Ryan, who is really coming of age as the first great, national leader of the next generation of Republicans. ”

Urgent: Does Paul Ryan Really Help Defeat Obama? Vote in Exclusive Poll

Gingrich said, “I don’t think Romney needs to worry about being kinder and gentler. Romney needs to worry about saying to people, ‘I have the background and I have the experience to get this country fixed. We are in real trouble. This is the worst recession since the Great Depression and this is the greatest deficit pile-up in our history and Washington is clearly out of control, and if you want a strong person with a strong background who will roll up his sleeves and get the job done, then I would like to be your president.' "

He concluded: “If you want somebody to have a beer with, Barack Obama will win every time. It’s just that he’s not competent. I tell people it’s like having two plumbers you can hire. One can’t fix the plumbing but he’s really nice and the other guy can get the plumbing fixed but he’s probably not going to sit and drink a beer. Which plumber are you going to have?”

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