NPR : News

Filed Under:

Gingrich Cautions GOP About 'Overreach' On Scandals

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who was front-and-center during the Republican-led impeachment of President Clinton in 1998, is cautioning his GOP colleagues about the risk of appearing to be too eager as they dig into the scandals now dogging the Obama administration.

"I think we overreached in '98 — how's that for a quote you can use?" Gingrich told NPR's Mara Liasson for a story on Friday's broadcast of Morning Edition.

Now, says Gingrich, Republicans should proceed with caution. "They need to be calm and factual," he said. "For example, a [House] subcommittee ... should invite every single tea party, conservative, patriot group that was messed over by the IRS — every single one of them — to come in and testify, so that they build this deadening record of how many different people were having their rights abused by this administration."

The first such hearing, with the now-axed former head of the IRS, is set for this morning.

As we've been reporting, the Obama administration is faced with:

-- The IRS scandal, which involves the singling out of some conservative groups for extra scrutiny when they applied for tax-exempt status.

-- First Amendment-related objections about the seizure of Associated Press journalists' phone records.

-- Continued scrutiny over its response to the attack on Americans last September in Benghazi, Libya.

Gingrich's view about how Republicans should proceed echoes those expressed by other GOP leaders in a piece published Thursday evening by Politico:

"Republicans are worried one thing could screw up the political gift of three Obama administration controversies at once: fellow Republicans.

"Top GOP leaders are privately warning members to put a sock in it when it comes to silly calls for impeachment or over-the-top comparisons to Watergate. They want members to focus on months of fact-finding investigations — not rhetorical fury."

Earlier this week, The Washington Post's The Fix blog wrote that:

"Talk to any Republican political strategist about whether GOP leaders should spend their time talking about the terrorist attack in Benghazi or the Internal Revenue Service's targeting of conservatives and you will get a unanimous answer: IRS."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Sonia Rykiel, Designer Known As The 'Queen Of Knitwear,' Dies

The famously redheaded Rykiel embodied the intellectual chic and feminism of Paris in the late 1960s. With vibrant stripes or simple black, her clothes hugged a woman's body.
NPR

The Aztecs Once Revered It. Will You Fall For Amaranth, Too?

Hardier than corn, this ancient grain has a subtle, nutty flavor and is full of nutrients. But for most Americans, amaranth is still obscure. Researchers in Tennessee hope to change that.
NPR

In Stunning Reversal, Trump Suggests He'd 'Work With' Immigrants In U.S. Illegally

Donald Trump courted hard-liners on immigration in the primary campaign. But he signaled Wednesday night he'd be in favor of a path to legalization for some immigrants in the U.S. illegally.
WAMU 88.5

A Cyber-Psychologist Explains How Human Behavior Changes Online

Dr. Mary Aiken, a pioneering cyber-psychologist, work inspired the CBS television series "CSI: Cyber". She explains how going online changes our behavior in small and dramatic ways, and what that means for how we think about our relationship with technology.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.