Gingrich: ‘People Don’t Elect Presidents Who Tell Them To Sacrifice’

In a November 1st interview with Newsweek, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (R-GA) was asked, “Obama said in one of the debates that Americans need to sacrifice and cut back their energy usage. How do you think that’ll fly as part of the solution?” [Note: Obama didn’t actually say that.] Gingrich responded:

Just as well as it did with Jimmy Carter. People don’t elect presidents who tell them to sacrifice. They elect presidents who solve problems so they don’t have to sacrifice.

If Gingrich is right, it looks like we won’t have a president for the next four years.

On June 21, 2005, McCain said of his global warming legislation:


Does it involve some sacrifice on the part of the American people? Yes. I have to tell you, every time I talk to young Americans and say, Are you willing to make some sacrifice to prevent the occurrences that we see are happening now, these young Americans are more than willing to do so.

On August 8, 2005, McCain said of the American troops serving in the Iraq war:

We must win. We must prevail. And it may require additional service and sacrifice, tragically.

On April 11, 2007, McCain said of the American troops serving in the Iraq war:

In Iraq, hope is a fragile thing, but all the more admirable for the courage and sacrifice necessary to nurture it.

On July 27, 2008, McCain again said of the American troops involved in the Iraq “surge”:

When the crucial time came as to whether we were going to leave Iraq and lose, or stay and do the very unpopular thing of 30,000 additional troops — asking young Americans to make the sacrifice — he was wrong, I was right.

Gingrich is speaking flat nonsense. The American public are not children who require false coddling and empty promises, but are proud adults who elect people who lead by example. As John F. Kennedy concluded his inaugural address:

Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.