Gingrich: Pastor's Comments 'Unwise,' 'Inappropriate'

Sunday, 09 Oct 2011 02:10 PM

By Paul Scicchitano

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Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich described a Texas pastor’s questioning of Mitt Romney’s religious beliefs as “unwise” and “inappropriate.”

Appearing on CBS’ “Face the Nation” with fellow GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain, Gingrich said no one should sit in judgment on somebody else’s religious beliefs. Texas pastor Robert Jeffress on Friday described Mormonism as a “cult” at the Value Voters Summit.

“I think he’s a Mormon, and Mormons define themselves as a branch of Christianity,” Gingrich of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who shares the lead with Cain in a recent CBS poll of GOP presidential contenders.

Cain repeated his earlier statement on another program that he is not running for “theologian in chief” and said the issue of whether Mormons are Christian is not relevant to the overall campaign. “I believe that they believe that they are Christians based upon their definition but getting into whether they are more Christian than another group, I don’t think that’s relevant to this campaign.”

Both candidates agreed that the recent Wall Street protests are misguided.

“The sad thing is this is a natural product of Obama’s class warfare,” Gingrich said. “I regard the Wall Street protest as a national outcome of a bad education system teaching them really dumb ideas.”

Cain defended his comments in which he speculated that some protesters are merely “jealous” of people with good jobs. “Why aren’t there jobs? Go and picket the White House,” he said, blaming unions and union-related organizations for coordinating the protests on Wall Street and other parts of the country.

“It’s coordinated to create a distraction so people won’t focus on the policies of the failed administration,” he said. “It’s anti-American because to protest Wall Street and the bankers is basically saying that you are anti-capitalism. The free market system and capitalism are two of the things that have allowed this nation and this economy to become the biggest in the world.”


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