Candace Gingrich-Jones: Newt Hasn't Changed

BY Julie Bolcer

December 16 2011 2:10 PM ET

REBECCA JONES CANDACE GINGRICH X390 (SOURCED) | ADVOCATE.COM“What’s at stake is whether we continue to move forward and stay in the
21st century or whether we get tossed back to the 20th century,” she
says. “There would be no, I don’t think, positive movement for LGBT
people in our country, and quite possibly and quite probably there would
be motions undertaken to take away the things that have been
accomplished.”

This week Gingrich affirmed parts of the
“Marriage Vow” from the Iowa group Family Leader. He sent a letter
expressing his support for defending DOMA and passing a constitutional
amendment against same-sex marriage, although he did not sign the entire
pledge, which also includes “recognition of the overwhelming statistical
evidence” that “children raised by a mother and a father together
experience better learning, less addiction, less legal trouble, and less
extramarital pregnancy.”

“I am disappointed that he has
succumbed to the Family Leader and this pledge, even though he didn’t
sign it,” says Gingrich-Jones, who still recalls his comment two decades ago that it was “madness to pretend that
families are anything other than heterosexual couples.” She says that
she and Rebecca plan on having a family, although it is not something
she has discussed with her brother.

“I don’t know how or if his
positions have changed,” she says of adoption by same-sex couples.
“Maybe he was being smart by not signing it because he knows, and maybe
I’m giving him credit here, I don’t know, maybe he knows that it would
be, you know, wrong.”

The thrice-married Gingrich, who has
admitted to cheating on his ex-wives, also pledged in the Family
Leader letter to “uphold the institution of marriage through personal
fidelity” to his spouse. Some social conservatives have expressed
wariness about his marital past, and Congressman Barney Frank of Massachusetts has
challenged him to a debate about DOMA on the same point, saying that his
personal history would make him “an ideal opponent” for marriage
equality arguments.

“That’s a question that anyone who is
considering voting for my brother needs to ask themselves,” says
Gingrich-Jones, who declines to take a stance on the matter. “I’m not
one to judge other people’s pasts and histories.” She does add, however,
that the prospect of a debate between the retiring gay congressman and
her brother “would be awesome.”

However, she says a debate between her
brother and President Obama could be even more likely, as she says it
seems “perfectly reasonable” that Newt Gingrich could become the Republican
presidential nominee. She does not expect that he would win the general election, and she believes that his stances on LGBT issues would be one of the reasons why.

“One thing that I think we’ve known and
that we’ve definitely seen is that he’s really good at debating, so we
would see, during those occasions, that he would prove to be
formidable,” she says of her brother. “But at the end of the day,
there’s absolutely no, no comparison, so when debating topics, issues of
equality and things related to that, he’s not going to get anywhere
debating President Obama.”













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