Gingrich uses Nashville visit to slam Obama on gas prices

Monday, February 27, 2012 at 6:54pm

Despite trailing the rest of the candidates in the Republican primary polls in Tennessee, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich took on President Barack Obama — and a handful of Occupy protesters — at his campaign stop in Nashville.

Gingrich preached mostly about his oil and energy strategy to a crowd of roughly 200 on the east lawn of the State Capitol. Gingrich said he had an “identity” with the setting, which was near the grave of James K. Polk, the only speaker of the house to be elected president.

The 30-minute speech mostly focused on Gingrich's plan to lower gas prices back down to $2.50 — which he said could be achieved by creating more opportunities to utilize oil in the U.S. rather than relying on the “volatile and unstable Middle East.”

“[The next time you are at the gas pump] ask yourself how much would you save if you used the $2.50 per gallon plan,” Gingrich said.

His speech touched on the same points as a 30-minute advertisement Gingrich purchased on WSMV-TV which ran Sunday at 12:30 p.m.

However, unlike the ad, Gingrich faced opposition from Occupy Nashville protesters toward the latter half of his speech. Five protesters, one wearing a “Free Syria” shirt and waving a red flag, started call and response chants like “Wake up! It's class war!”

Gingrich addressed the Occupiers, saying “no matter how strange your ideas, you still have the freedom to yell them.” Other attendees chanted “Newt! Newt!” while another called the protesters “freaks.” Shortly thereafter, Gingrich wrapped up his speech as Occupy Nashville continued to chant “Liar! Liar!” in the background. State troopers and a member of Gingrich's campaign asked the protesters to leave, and they obliged.

In the latest Vanderbilt University poll of Republican primary voters, Gingrich finished fourth behind Sen. Rick Santorum, Gov. Mitt Romney and Ron Paul. However, the poll also showed that 13 percent were undecided.

“This is a very fluid race with lots of ‘don’t knows’ and ‘none of the aboves,’” said John Geer, political science professor at Vanderbilt.

But even though he's trailing in the polls, Gingrich didn't hint at the thought of an uphill climb. Instead, he urged rally attendants to envision a debate between him and Obama — making no mention of his GOP opponents.

The rally was one of several Gingrich campaign stops in Middle Tennessee today. He started the day at a healthcare roundtable discussion at Baker Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz's law offices, then hosted a GOP luncheon at Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis.

Gingrich was also set to address the GOP Caucus at the State Capitol. The event was closed to media. A Williamson County fundraiser with former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson, who introduced Gingrich at the rally, was scheduled to end the day.

19 Comments on this post:

By: Nitzche on 2/28/12 at 8:08

hey, did you hear about Mt. Zion Baptist and the alleged sexual abuse at the black mega church? well I didn't either, CP doesn't deem it big enough story...hhhhmmm

By: ccmishu on 2/28/12 at 8:43

Where did you hear about that? I want to read up on it.

By: C.A.Jones on 2/28/12 at 9:03

Ever see the movie "The Game"? You know, rich people pay to live this real adventure game etc. etc.... I think it would be neat to be able to do this in Nashville and use the Occupy protestors as the people that you get to kill. I think that would make a good use out of them AND it validates their ideas that the rich people are killing them somehow. It would be neat if they find out that it's true and it's by the lawyer; in the den; with a candlestick; to the head; 45 times.


By: pswindle on 2/28/12 at 10:19

Gingrich is the biggest joke of all, but look at Rick and Mitt, I really don't know. Who is making the money, the GOP led oil companies? This is where most of their money comes from, and he wants to blame the President.

By: govskeptic on 2/28/12 at 10:43

pswindle: where on earth do you get all the false info you spread
across these pages daily? So, you'd vote for any democrat for any
office, we get it and promise to give back the Governorship in about
20 yrs.

By: NewYorker1 on 2/28/12 at 1:22

OH NO!!! What will I wear?

By: pswindle on 2/28/12 at 1:29


Do you think that the oil companies are not putting billions into the GOP pockets?
I rest my case.

By: T-BONE on 2/28/12 at 1:55


By: spooky24 on 2/28/12 at 4:54

Obama's reelection campaign raised 990million dollars-just short of a billion-twice the amount anyone else has raised in history . Discloses 39million from various oil companies-but that is OK-right?

I know Obama is frustrated because he can't spin the price at the pump-or cook the books like unemployment.


By: Mike Burch on 2/29/12 at 12:41

It's amusing to hear Republicans harping about the price of oil.

Who voted for the invasion of Iraq, which caused the price of oil to skyrocket? Warmongering Republicans.

Who voted against the invasion of Iraq? Barack Obama and the majority of House Democrats.

Who will put us at war with Iran and make the price of oil double again?
Warmongering Republicans.

By: NilsOrion on 2/29/12 at 6:42

A quote from (maybe) Mark Twain: "All politicians are liars because they make promises they can't keep." Gingrich's promise is a good example. To ramp up oil and gas production is this country to a level that would eliminate dependence on foreign sources would cost perhaps a trillion dollars and take perhaps ten years. Does anyone really believe that this would result in cheap gas? We are, after all, a capitalistic country and profit is a prime motivator.

By: yucchhii on 3/1/12 at 2:42

yucchhii Hey NEWT, CAST THE FIRST STONE...IDIOT!! NONE OF YOU POLITICIANS ARE WORTH THE PRICE OF TOE JAM BETWEEN A BUMS FEET!!! That apllies to all you democrats AND republicans too!!!

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