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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Is Newt Gingrich really the best candidate?

Gingrich was raised a Lutheran. In graduate school he was a Southern Baptist. He has now converted to Catholicism. I hope his political views are stronger than his religious ones.

In the spring of 1980, Gingrich left his wife after beginning an affair with Marianne Ginther.[144][145] In 1984, Jackie Gingrich told The Washington Post that the divorce was a "complete surprise" to her. According to Jackie, in September 1980, Gingrich and their children visited her while she was in the hospital, recovering from surgery, and Gingrich wanted to discuss the terms of their divorce.[146] Gingrich has disputed that account.[147] In 2011 their daughter, Jackie Gingrich Cushman, said that it was her mother who requested the divorce, that it happened prior to the hospital stay, and that Gingrich's visit was for the purpose of bringing the couple's children to see their mother, not to discuss the divorce.[148] Although Gingrich's presidential campaign staff continued to insist in 2011 that his wife requested the divorce, court documents obtained by CNN from Carroll County, Georgia, indicated that Jackie had asked a judge to block the process stating that although "she has adequate and ample grounds for divorce... she does not desire one at this time [and] does not admit that this marriage is irretrievably broken."[149]
Gingrich speaking to supporters at a townhall in Derry, New Hampshire, along with his wife, Callista.
According to L. H. Carter, Gingrich's campaign treasurer, Gingrich said of his first wife: "She's not young enough or pretty enough to be the wife of the President. And besides, she has cancer."[150][151] Gingrich has denied saying it. His supporters dismiss Carter as a disgruntled former aide who was miffed at not being asked to accompany Gingrich to Washington.[152]
In 1981, six months after the divorce from Jackie Gingrich was final, Gingrich wed Marianne Ginther.[153][154][155][156] In 1993, while still married to Marianne, Gingrich began an affair with House of Representatives staffer Callista Bisek, who was 23 years his junior.[157] Gingrich and his second wife were divorced in 2000 having produced no children. On January 19, 2012, Marianne Gingrich alleged in an interview on ABC's Nightline that she had declined to accept Gingrich's suggestion of an open marriage.[158] This allegation was disputed by Gingrich during the South Carolina primary debate on the same day, claiming that the story was false.[159] Marianne Gingrich re-affirmed the story the next day.[160]
In 2000, Gingrich married Callista Bisek shortly after his divorce from second wife Marianne was finalized. He and Callista currently live inMcLean, Virginia.[161] In a 2011 interview with David Brody of the Christian Broadcasting Network, Gingrich addressed his past infidelities by saying, "There's no question at times in my life, partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked too hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate."[155][156] In December 2011, after the group Iowans for Christian Leaders in Government requested that he sign their so-called "Marriage Vow", Gingrich sent a lengthy written response. It included his pledge to "uphold personal fidelity to my spouse".

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