Newt Refuses to Play By Mainstream Media Rules on HHS Mandate

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Hattip to commenter Chris for pointing this out to me.  Newt Gingrich is a flawed candidate, but when it comes to standing up to the Mainstream Media, and refusing to allow them to set the terms of the debate over issues, he is in a class by himself.  In the video above, he takes David Gregory apart on Meet the Press today, refusing to allow Gregory to frame the debate, dishonestly, as access to contraception rather than as an assault on religious liberty.  Newt recognizes that the Mainstream Media is almost entirely an unpaid arm of the Democrat party.  He knows that they are adversaries and he treats them accordingly.  All Republicans and conservatives:  look and learn!

MR. GREGORY: Limbaugh issued an apology yesterday, which many people may not know about, a portion of which reads as following, “In this instance I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke. My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.” How much damage has this done?
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: You know, David, I am astonished at the desperation of the elite media to avoid rising gas prices, to avoid the president’s apology to religious fanatics in Afghanistan, to avoid a trillion dollar deficit, to avoid the longest period of unemployment since the Great Depression and to suddenly decide that Rush Limbaugh is the great national crisis of this week.
MR. GREGORY: Mm-hmm.
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: There’s no debate about access to contraception. There is a debate, which Cardinal George of Chicago has pointed out, is a war against the Catholic Church. You do have this weird situation where President Obama apologizes to Islamic extremists while waging war against the Catholic Church. That’s the language, by the way, of the Catholic bishops. You have an issue here of whether the government can coerce the Catholic Church, not just into a contraception, but into sterilization and abortion, something I don’t find any reporter wants to talk about. You have a president who voted for infanticide as a, as a state senator, who represents the most extreme pro-abortion position in America. So if you want to have a dialogue about this, David…
MR. GREGORY: Mm-hmm.
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: …let’s set the record straight. Barack Obama, as a state senator, voted to allow doctors to kill babies if they survived the abortion. Barack Obama, as president, in the most radical anti-religious move made by a–by any president, is trying to coerce the Catholic Church at a time when he’s been told by the bishops…
MR. GREGORY: Well, Mr. Speak…
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: …that would have to give up every single hospital–wait a–let me finish. They would have–this is what they say.
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: They would have to give up every single hospital, they would have to give up every single religious–every single university and college associated with the church because he is asking them to violate their religious beliefs. Now you want–if you want a debate…
MR. GREGORY: Mm-hmm.
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: …over whether or not the president of the United States should be able to impose his views on a religious institution…
MR. GREGORY: All right. And what he…
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: …and whether America’s now a secular country, let’s have that debate.
MR. GREGORY: Can I just get to my question? Do you think it was harmful…
MR. GREGORY: …that Limbaugh–certainly an influential voice in the conservative grass roots and you well know that–was it appropriate for him to apologize? Do you think he’s done damage to the debate that you’re now getting into?
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: OK. Look, I think–I think it was appropriate for Rush to apologize, I’m glad he apologized. Do you think the president owes an apology to all the men and women in uniform who he, frankly, abandoned when he apologized to religious fanatics in Afghanistan? What’s your opinion, David?
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: Should the president apologize to men and women in uniform that he abandoned?
MR. GREGORY: Well, I’m going to continue with my question, so…
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: If you want to get into a discussion about apologies, I’m happy to discuss it.
MR. GREGORY: I’m happy–well, so my question, though, is you, you want the other side to appreciate your view, which is that this is a religious liberty question at the heart of this access to contraception.
MR. GREGORY: Can you appreciate the view of those who disagree with you, that this is an attack on women’s rights? That’s their view, reproductive rights, access to contraception?
MR. GREGORY: And in the extreme that it’s some sort of war on women?
MR. GREGORY: Do you appreciate that view at all?
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: Wait, wait. Nobody’s blocking anyone from having access to contraception. No one. The young lady who testified can get access to contraception. Nobody said she couldn’t. The question is, should a Catholic institution, or for that matter, the Ohio Christian University, which is a Protestant institution, which is a very pro-life institution, which is now being told it will have to pay for abortion pills. Now should, should, should a Protestant fundamentalist institution be dictated to by Washington politicians over whether or not it can have its own religious beliefs or have we become a country where it’s OK to go to church on Sunday morning for one hour, but let’s not actually express those beliefs the other–the rest of the week. Now I think this is, this is the most fundamental assault on religious liberty in American history despite every effort by the elite media to distort what it’s about. It’s not about access to contraception. People have–people who want to can get access to contraception every day. That young lady can get access to contraception. It is a question about whether or not a religiously affiliated institution should be coerced by the federal government.
MR. GREGORY: So it seems to me this, in your view, is actually a pretty fundamental issue, you just don’t like the framing of it. But the fact that it gets raised is something that you think will certainly get you animated, you think it’s certainly going to energize a lot of voters on both sides of the aisle.
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: Right. And I, I, I don’t like the framing because I think the framing was false. That young lady has access to contraception every day. I mean, there’s no place in America where it’s illegal to go get contraception. What, what the question is, is should a religiously affiliated institution be required to provide abortion pills, should they be required to provide sterilization? Remember, the Obama rule was a lot more than just contraception. It–and by the way, Mitt Romney was on the wrong side of this issue in Massachusetts where he instructed the Catholic hospitals would be required to issue abortion pills against their religious beliefs.
MR. GREGORY: All right. Let, let…
FMR. REP. GINGRICH: So this is a very serious fundamental fight about religious liberty.
MR. GREGORY: OK. Fair enough. Let’s move on to some of the, the other issues and also the state of your campaign.

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  1. It’s very obvious the new media is Democrat. Women (and men) have the right to reproductive health. It’s called, “Say NO!” No one ever died from lack of sex.

  2. My hero.

    MM ‘rules’ are not for fair game or discourse, defaming their profession as journalists,
    as mouthpieces for any agenda of the democrats. Mostly, MM has forsaken objective reporting for vilifying and actually bullying (great role models) those outside the D party line. Maybe, the A list is more important than truth, liberty and life for MM people.

  3. That.was.masterful.

    Newt brought it to Gregory. The most interesting part of the whole thing to me was Newt’s claim that Pres. Obama voted to kill babies. And Gregory didn’t even question it.

    Think about that: Newt said that Barack Obama was in favor of infanticide. Infanticide. If that doesn’t get a reporter’s attention, then nothing will. Yet, David Gregory doesn’t even ask Newt to defend the idea that Obama voted to allow babies to be killed. The conversation just moves on.

    The media doesn’t want a close examination of that particular item because of the details. If that story were truly aired to the general public, I don’t know how Barack Obama could stay in office. So, for the media, the strategy becomes: let the Republican “crazies” say it; ignore it; move on.

  4. Yes, the other GOP candidates need to take a page from Newt’s book – challenge the assumptions of the left! When I see Romney trying to explain that, really, Republicans aren’t so very men, I want to start crying.

    The late Andrew Breitbart also refused to play by the MSM’s rules – which is the reason he will be so missed by many of us and why he was so hated by the Left..

  5. Heh. That should be “mean,” not “men.”

    Although “Republicans aren’t so very men” works too – paging Dr. Freud…

  6. Newt is exactly right. This false notion of denial of “woman’s reproductive healthcare” propaganda is a smoke screen and diverts the actual discussion of Obama’s disgusting record. This IS about religious liberty, period. There never was any problem with getting contraception.

    Rush Limbaugh’s words to describe Ms Fluke may not have been the best, but they were accurate. Her moral character is shameful and any decent woman would not be discussing their sexual history in front of Congress and the world. Why is she at a Catholic College in the first place?

  7. Thanks for posting this Don. I just posted it to my Facebook page. Newt is definitely providing the template for how conservatives should deal with the left wing media.

  8. Gingrich has a gift for that Greg, and I just hope that other conservatives learn what he is teaching in regard to the media. Too many conservatives attempt futilely to make friends with members of the media, while the wisest understand that they are simply political adversaries to be used as foils while speaking directly to the audience.

  9. Mr.David Gregory of Meet the Press on Sunday morning was taken to the woodshed. While using only his tunnelvision he obviously wanted to dictate a Rush Limbaugh smear
    Caught blindsided he was unable to defend the medias position in this so called laughable interview with the former Speaker Gingrich.

  10. Newt Gingrich is a flawed candidate…

    Sigh. Aren’t they all.

    If God called someone with Speaker Gingrich’s insights and Sen. Santorum’s image to be a candidate for president this election year, that someone didn’t answer the call.

    Moses was a flawed man and he led God’s people to freedom despite an oppressive regime.

  11. As a former Democrat who voted for Kennedy and Carter, the way the media is trying to skew this issue makes me glad I left that party. All of the main stream media think and act the same way. Their Freedom of Speech is just as threatened as Freedom of Religion.

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