In 1993, former Speaker Newt Gingrich notoriously whipped the House GOP into opposing President Clinton’s major initiatives, ranging from the budget to health care reform. The New York Times reports that Gingrich has been advising the GOP leadership to follow the same path with President Obama’s agenda:
[Rep. Eric] Cantor said he had studied Mr. Gingrich’s years in power and had been in regular touch with him as he sought to help his party find the right tone and message. Indeed, one of Mr. Gingrich’s leading victories in unifying his caucus against Mr. Clinton’s package of tax increases to balance the budget in 1993 has been echoed in the events of the last few weeks. “I talk to Newt on a regular basis because he was in the position that we are in: in the extreme minority,” he said.
As ThinkProgress has noted, despite being out of office, Gingrich still has found a key role in current legislative debates. In September, he “was whipping against” the first TARP package “up until the last minute” and was said to have been largely responsible for the GOP voting against it.
In 1993, speaking about Clinton’s budget, Gingrich warned: “I believe this will lead to a recession next year. This is the Democrat machine’s recession, and each one of them will be held personally accountable.”