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Gingrich Campaign Press Release - Newt Touts His Experience in Iowa

July 15, 2011

Newt spoke this morning to a group of conservative businessmen and women in Iowa. was there and filed this report. Excerpt:

"I've always thought he was a very solid, deep thinker," said Bill Weidmaier, of Des Moines, president of Iowa-Des Moines Supply, which distributes products to other businesses. "He thinks through and goes a lot deeper in his thinking on some of these issues than a lot of the politicians."

Weidmaier, who put together Friday's breakfast gathering to see Gingrich on a day's notice, said he has not yet decided whom he will support in the 2012 presidential race. But he said the staff turnover in Gingrich's campaign doesn't affect his views of the former U.S. House speaker.

"I run a business, and I have people leaving me on a regular basis, and I'd like to think I'm still a good business person," Weidmaier said. "I still have a solid business, and whether it's philosophy or whatever, I think it's immaterial. And I also think that maybe creative people probably tend to have a little more turnover, because a lot of people don't understand the big picture."

Dan Vaughan, a Des Moines Republican, said he voted for Democratic President Barack Obama in 2008, because he thought the country needed a change. But on Friday, he said he now "has more doubts" about Obama.

Vaughan said he was impressed with Gingrich and was not troubled by the turmoil Gingrich has had in the campaign. "He definitely has the experience," Vaughan said.

Gingrich touted that experience as what differentiates him from other GOP presidential candidates. He co-authored the Contract with America in 1994 before the first mid-term election of President Bill Clinton's administration, which ushered in a Republican takeover of Congress and his own rise to U.S. House speaker.

He said that under his leadership, Congress balanced the budget for four consecutive years. He said he has "very large solutions that have been thought through for a long time" and has the experience of working with Reagan to re-launch the economy.

"Experience matters, and if understanding the right principles matter, then I think people may conclude, as you get closer to the decisions in January, people may come to the conclusion that, in fact, I have a unique niche," Gingrich said. "There's nobody else around that has balanced the federal budget. There's nobody else around that has participated in foreign policy the way that I've participated."

Gingrich described his competitors for the Republican nomination for president as "very good people who can give very good speeches and have very good ideas." But he warned that going with them will be a risk.

"Is that the gamble you want to take?" he asked. "Or do you want to take a gamble on someone who has actually achieved very large national things and is prepared to do it?"

Newt Gingrich, Gingrich Campaign Press Release - Newt Touts His Experience in Iowa Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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