Do You Know Newt?
He sometimes sounds just like Obama.


Newt Gingrich may have a long legacy of activism on the right, but he has also enthusiastically endorsed a wide range of dubiously conservative positions over the years. In fact, it can occasionally be hard to distinguish his suggestions and views from those of President Obama.

Following are 19 quotations, some of which were said by Barack Obama, and some of which were said by Newt Gingrich. Not all of these ideas are as outlandish as the space colony that Newt mentioned this week in Florida, nor as radically conservative as making students work the janitors’ shifts; but some of them could certainly be mistaken for President Obama’s ideas. Click the blue buttons to reveal who said what.


1. “Andy Stern, the head of the Service Employees International Union, is the union leader who probably best understands the challenge of the world market and the need to make American union members productive in the face of world competition.”

Who said it?
Gingrich (Real Change, p. 33)

2. “We need comprehensive immigration reform, part of which would allow entrepreneurs and high-skill individuals to stay here, because we want to be attracting top talent here.”

Who said it?
Obama (town hall, July 2011)

3. “The United States will gain far more supporters and do far more good throughout Latin America by including [them] in the space program than it will by sending the same amount of money to any Latin American country in military aid.”

Who said it?
Gingrich (Window of Opportunity, p. 52)

4. “[We should] make the U.S. a leader in the global effort to combat climate change by leading a new international global warming partnership.”

Who said it?
Obama (Campaign literature, 2008)

5. “I am a hawk, but I am a cheap hawk. . . . I don’t think the Pentagon should be any more exempt from reengineering, downsizing, and rethinking than any other part of the federal government.”

Who said it?
Gingrich (To Renew America, p. 184)

6. “In order to reach the space station, we will work with a growing array of private companies competing to make getting to space easier and more affordable. . . . The truth is, NASA has always relied on private industry to help design and build the vehicles that carry astronauts to space, from the Mercury capsule that carried John Glenn into orbit nearly 50 years ago, to the space shuttle Discovery.”

Who said it?
Obama (speech, April 2010)

7. “America, as the world’s sole superpower, is obligated to provide environmental leadership at a time when so many world leaders are wringing their hands at the sheer enormity of the task.”

Who said it?
Gingrich (Contract with the Earth, p. 3)

8. “President Bush’s failure to address the NAACP early in his presidency was a clear signal to the African American community that Republicans did not see them as worthy of engagement in dialogue.”

Who said it?
Gingrich (Real Change, p. 21)

9. “It was an enormous mistake for us to try to occupy [Iraq] after June of 2003. We have to pull back, and we have to recognize it.”

Who said it?
Gingrich (speech, April 2006)


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