Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich gave the GOP his playbook on how to keep the House in Republican hands this coming November, saying they have to toughen up and hit back if they want to win.
“We are not tough enough, we’re not fast enough, we don’t think aggressively enough,” Gingrich said Wednesday at the winter meeting for the Republican National Committee. “The truth is, too many Republicans don’t have the nerve to go out to new neighborhoods and new voters. They talk in cost-benefit terms. Well, that’s not going to work if we are serious about growing a stable majority.”
The former Speaker of the House told Republicans to stop complaining about the news medias’ bias and adopt an attack dog mentality when giving interviews with the press. He wants them to treat TV studios like a “war zone” and avoid the trap of believing the interviewer is their friend.
“Don’t complain about the news media. The news media is a fact. The news media is the offensive wing of the other team. They are not the problem. They are a fact. What we do about them is the problem,” he said. “So, we have to design a campaign plan, and we have to train our candidates assuming the worst about the news media. Whenever you interact with the news media you should assume you’re going into a war zone. You should plan to take the host head on and challenge their assumptions. ”
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“I read the transcripts every Sunday. You would be amazed how many of our folks are too slow, too untrained, and don’t know what they’re talking about,” Gingrich continued. “So, they walk in as though George Stephanopoulos is neutral. I mean not only was he the Clinton press secretary, who gave $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation, and we allowed him to chair a presidential debate in 2012. Now, you at least have a minimum rule. Nobody who’s completely on the Left is going to get to chair anything for this party’s good future.”
Gingrich believes it is critical the GOP understand they are in a “cultural civil war” and are fighting against people who hate and “despise” conservative values.
“It’s very important for us to understand this is a fight. We are in a cultural civil war with people who despise us. There’s no neutrality in there. And that’s why they dislike Trump so much,” Gingrich said. “Because Trump has the nerve to talk about MS-13 because they can’t answer it. The more he is right, the more enraged they are.”
One of Gingrich’s final points to Republicans was to embrace President Donald Trump’s political style and mimic it, every chance they get.
“I would say to every candidate: study Trump. Trump is one of the greatest articulators I have ever seen,” he concluded. “He understands fighting. He likes to fight, and he is prepared to figure out how to go at you at an angle you can’t defend.”