Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich had some advice Tuesday for Sarah Palin, his potential rival for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012.
“She’s got to slow down and be a lot more careful and think through what she’s saying and how she’s saying it,” Mr. Gingrich told George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”Ms. Palin was widely criticized for remarks she made last week defending herself from criticism that her rhetoric had anything to do with the shooting spree in Arizona earlier this month that left six dead and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D., Ariz.) gravely wounded. She called the political attacks in the wake of the tragedy – which hasn’t been linked to her in any way – a “blood libel.”
In an interview with Sean Hannity on Fox News Monday, Ms. Palin defended her use of the term, saying: “‘Blood libel’ obviously means being falsely accused of having blood on your hands.”
“There’s no question that she’s become more controversial,” Mr. Gingrich said Tuesday on ABC. “But she is still a phenomenon. I don’t know anybody else in American politics who can put something on Twitter, or put something on Facebook, and automatically have it become a national story. So she remains, I think, a very formidable person in her own right.”
Neither Ms. Palin nor Mr. Gingrich has announced plans to pursue a presidential bid, but both are viewed as potential candidates, and possible front-runners, if they opt to run.
In an interview on NBC’s “Today Show” that also aired Tuesday, former Vice President Dick Cheney, “We have to be a little bit careful here about a rush to judgment.”
But he stopped short of critiquing Ms. Palin herself.
“I’m interested in Gov. Palin, as a lot of people are,” the former vice president said. “She’s clearly a factor.”
He deflected a question about whether Ms. Palin is qualified for the job of president, but he did venture a review of her show on TLC, “Sarah Palin’s Alaska.”
‘I think it’s very good,” he said. “I love Alaska.”