Speaking to Republican radio host Sean Hannity on Thursday, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (R) claimed that her favored candidate for president, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, somehow stands to benefit by his second wife claiming that he asked her for an “open marriage.”
“They, thinking that by trotting out this old Gingrich divorce interview that’s old news — and it does feature a disgruntled ex, claiming that it would destroy his campaign — all it does, Sean, is incentivize conservatives and independents who are so sick of the politics of personal destruction, because it’s played so selectively by media, that their target, in this case Newt, he’s now going to soar even more,” Palin said.
“Because we know the game now, and we just won’t put up with it. So, good call, media. Way to go to covertly hype this, even Gingrich opponents. For being so brilliant, they sure are dumb.”
Palin, who often takes it upon herself to try and correct what she calls the “lamestream media,” said that ABC’s interview was “old,” when in fact it is the first interview ever conducted with Marianne Gingrich, who divorced the former House speaker in 1999 shortly after Gingrich and his fellow Republicans put to rest their years-long crusade against President Bill Clinton’s sexual infidelities.
On the campaign trail, Gingrich has often portrayed himself as a defender of “traditional marriage” and an opponent of equal rights for homosexuals. So has Palin. Both have pledged to support a constitutional amendment that forbids homosexuals from getting married, which they claim protects the “institution of marriage.”
The ABC News interview broadcast Thursday night revealed that Gingrich carried on an affair with his third wife, then his mistress, for six years while married to Marianne. Gingrich married Marianne in 1981 after divorcing his first wife, Jackie, while she was being treated for cancer. Their marriage lasted until Gingrich sought a divorce after Marianne was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.
Much like Palin, Gingrich’s only response to the scandal has been to blame the media. During Thursday night’s CNN debate, the former House speaker accused CNN host John King of engaging in “destructive, vicious” tactics meant to harm his campaign after he was asked to respond to his ex-wife’s allegations.
“Let me be quite clear: The story is false,” he said. “Every personal friend I had who knew us during that period says the story is false… I am tired of the elite media protecting Barack Obama by attacking Republicans!”
Palin and her husband both endorsed Gingrich before the interview aired.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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