Conservative virtual reality enthusiast Newt Gingrich is reportedly high on Donald Trump’s list of running mate picks. This week, he flew to Indiana for an impromptu meeting with the presumptive Republican nominee. But a few months ago, Newt was eyeing the prime cut of beef a l’orange that’s poised to lead his party with the skepticism of a child who isn’t sure he wanted to take a bite.
ProPublica has the transcript of a closed-door speech Gingrich gave to Republican bigwigs in February, long before he endorsed Trump or considered taking his VP spot. The speech is laudatory in some spots, but not all. A few highlights:
Gingrich also agreed with what many Republicans during the primary process feared: “National Review’s right. Donald Trump’s not a conservative.” Instead, Gingrich characterized him as “an American nationalist” who uses a deliberately unpredictable mix of hostility against “stupidity,” liberals and political correctness.
At one point, Gingrich suggested he was shocked to hear of a highly educated supporter of Trump’s. “I had a very sophisticated medical doctor in Des Moines write me two days ago and say he sent a thousand dollar check to Trump. And I wrote back and said what are you doing?” Gingrich said to laughs.
In the February speech, Gingrich said he had no idea what kind of president Trump might be. “I do not believe anybody including Trump can tell you what a Trump presidency would be like,” Gingrich said.
He also compared the GOP’s main man to the Kardashians, and, in a backhanded compliment about his marketing savvy, noted that Trump “talks at a fourth-grade level.”
Now that the nomination is almost certainly Trump’s, and that Gingrich might get a seat at the table, we expect he’ll think of a few nicer things to say in the coming days. Open up, Newtie boy! The Trump choo-choo’s coming through.