Clinton on Gingrich: He Thinks

Ex-president predicted his old foe would surge
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 27, 2011 12:31 PM CST
President Bill Clinton poses with House Speaker Newt Gingrich as President Clinton shows Gingrich a spork. Clinton is praising his onetime nemesis.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Disagreements between Newt Gingrich and Bill Clinton ground the federal government to a halt more than once, so it's a little unusual to hear the former president giving his old foe props. Clinton tells Newsmax that the former House speaker is surging in the polls because "he’s articulate and he tries to think of a conservative version of an idea that will solve a legitimate problem. He thinks about this stuff all the time."

While Clinton wouldn't predict whether Gingrich would win the Republican nomination, he praised his mainstream appeal, saying, "I think he’s doing well just because he’s thinking, and people are hungry for ideas that make some sense. I watched the national security debate. And Newt said two things that would make an independent voter say, ‘Well, I gotta consider that.’"

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