Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Newt Gingrich Blames Rove for Failures, Likely Will Not Run In 2008

Insight Magazine

Sources close to Mr. Gingrich said that, after having kept silent for more than a year, he has become openly critical of the administration, portraying the president as a weak man akin to Gerald Ford.

The former House speaker has warned conservatives not to expect anything from the White House over the remaining two years and instead focus on building a base for leadership for 2008.

"Newt bit his tongue for months and now feels he has to tell the truth: the White House does not have the power to promote any agenda," a source close to Mr. Gingrich said.

The sources said Mr. Gingrich, who refuses to commit to a presidential bid in 2008, blames White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove for Mr. Bush's mistakes, including the loss of Congress in 2006.

On Nov. 30, Mr. Gingrich, hosted by dozens of powerful conservatives, spoke at a private fund raiser for the Virginia Conservative Action PAC.

"2004 was pathetic, and 2006 was worse," Mr. Gingrich said, referring to the Rove-directed GOP campaigns.

Mr. Gingrich gave several reasons for the GOP’s loss of Congress in 2006. He cited the US failure to stabilize Iraq, the botched relief effort after Hurricane Katrina and the lack of an agenda that could have inspired Americans.

Mr. Gingrich called on President Bush to step up the war against terror and to crackdown on illegal immigration.

Those attending the fund raiser concluded that Mr. Gingrich expected that conservatives will be forced out of the White House over the next few months.

Sources close to Mr. Gingrich said he's likely ruled out a race for 2008. They said Mr. Gingrich expects Sen. Hillary Clinton to become the next president and intends to position himself as the Republican presidential nominee for 2012. ...

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