Question: Why has Scott Brown’s campaign been so successful?
Newt Gingrich: You know, this is an amazing country and every once in a while, the American people find a way to exert themselves without regard to the elites and without regard to whatever the established conventional wisdom is. I think this is going to be one of those periods. And I think what’s happened is, the Obama/Pelosi/Reed machine misread the meaning of the 2006 and 2008 elections. They went way too far to the left; they drove home a kind of authoritarian style of government that enraged people. And then they decided to pick a fight over healthcare that maximized the country’s sense of anxiety during a time when you have over 10% unemployment. All of that came together so that you have really, almost in a British bi-election sense. You have a national election being held in Massachusetts with resources spontaneously showing up from everywhere.
I saw a note this morning that Brown had raised $10 million on the internet in the last 10 days, which is, for a Senate race, I think clearly a record by a big margin. It’s because people spontaneously have moved to the sound of the guns and have said, here’s a place where I can send a signal to Washington to stop trying to make us into a socialist country. And I think you have a huge amount of energy behind Brown right now.
Question: What does Brown’s campaign say about the state of the Republican party?
Newt Gingrich: Well the Republicans held the governorship for 16 straight years. Deval Patrick is the first Democratic Governor since before Bill Weld. And I think that it says that, if you’re seen as an independent person, you can win without being a Democrat, even in Massachusetts as we have Republican Governors right now in Vermont and in Rhode Island and in Connecticut. People forget, there’s a lot bigger base of potential Republicanism in New England than the current office holders at the federal level.
I think also it says that Brown, correctly wants to run – and we did this in 1994 in our Contract with America Campaign. We wanted every American of every background to be part of what we are doing, not just polarizing on a Republican/Democratic basis. My guess is that Brown is going to get between 15% and 20% of the Democrats, about 60% to 65% of the Independents, and about 85% of the Republicans. So, he will really have a very broad coalition.