Newt Gingrich Still Thinks Food Stamps Are Just An African-American Issue
Revealing a smug defiance to his previous outlandish statements, GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich further decried the furor that arose after his controversial stances on public assistance and poor African-Americans and other minorities. During Monday night's (January 16) GOP debate in South Carolina, Gingrich was confronted by Fox News analyst Juan Williams regarding his statements toward Black Americans and poverty, dismissing the matter altogether by saying his comments were not offensive.
From Monday's debate, the transcribed portion of the exchange reads as follows:
Juan Williams: Speaker Gingrich, you recently said black Americans should demand jobs, not food stamps. You also said poor kids lack a strong work ethic, and proposed having them work as janitors in their schools. Can't you see that this is viewed, at a minimum, as insulting to all Americans, but particularly to black Americans?
Gingrich: No, I don't see that.
Gingrich's response elicited a hearty round of applause. Williams followed with, “And I got to tell you, my email account and my Twitter account has been inundated with people of all races who are asking if your comments are not intended to belittle the poor and racial minorities.”
Gingrich, in true politician fashion, used the GOP-friendly crowd to his advantage. “First of all, Juan, the fact is that more people have been put on food stamps by Barack Obama than any president in American history," Gingrich said amid cheers from the audience. "Now, I know among the politically correct you're not supposed to use facts that are uncomfortable."
Gingrich attempted to clean up his point, concluding by saying, “I'm going to continue to find ways to help poor people learn how to get a job, learn how to get a better job and learn someday to own the job."
Gingrich and his current bid for his party's nomination was under heavy scrutiny after the former Speaker Of The House made a gaffe at the expense of poor black Americans. Gingrich told attendees at a New Hampshire town hall meeting earlier in the month that he would urge, in front of the NAACP, that African-Americans should demand paychecks and not accept food stamps.
Newt Gingrich's hollow remarks miss the mark as statistically, white Americans are the largest recipients of welfare. The White House responded Tuesday (January 17) to Gingrich's assertion that Barack Obama is responsible for the increase of food stamps for the nation's poor. “You know as well as I do that that's crazy,” said White House press secretary Jay Carney of Gingrich's comments.