Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Newt: "Could Have The First Open Convention Since 1940"

On CNN last night, before the Santorum Sweep was known, Newt Gingrich touted the possibility of winning in a brokered convention, and suggested it would strengthen the Republican Party.

BLITZER: One final political question, Mr. Speaker, before I let you go. You remember 1976, Ronald Reagan challenged Gerald Ford, went all the way to the convention. You remember what happened. Are you in this at least until the convention? Do you think that it will go that far?

GINGRICH: Well, I don't know yet. I mean, I think -- I'm certainly in it all the way to the convention. We'll see what happens. You could have -- at the rate we're going, you could have the first open convention since 1940, which would give you something to cover that you would just love.

I have no idea how this is going to evolve. I know that I stand for the growth-oriented Reagan wing of the party that wants to see us be very dynamic and very different. And I think that fight with the establishment, as you pointed out, just like Reagan-Ford in 1976, I think that we are going to probably go a long way in distinguishing between Governor Romney's position and my position over the next couple of months.

But in addition, I think it's not harmful -- remember, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were in a contest all the way up to mid- June. It didn't seem to hurt them. John McCain won early, didn't seem to help him. So I think having us out here testing out ideas, showing people that there are genuine -- not just personality differences, there are philosophical differences about how we approach America's future. I think that's very healthy for the Republican Party, and I think we're going to be a party of better new ideas and better new solutions as a result of this process.

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