Thursday on Fox News Channel’s “The O’Reilly Factor,” former House Speaker Newt Gingrich weighed in on the recent allegations leveled against Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump involving sexual misconduct.
According to Gingrich, the media’s effort is intended to help his opponent Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and he described it as a “scurrilous smear” campaign.
Transcript as follows:
BILL O’REILLY, HOST “THE O’REILLY FACTOR”: Now, for the top story tonight, reaction, with us here in New York City, Newt Gingrich author of the new novel “Treason.” So where am I going wrong here, Mr. Speaker?
NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Sadly, I don’t think you are. It’s a pretty dark —
GINGRICH: This is probably the worst presidential election in certainly the last 100 years.
O’REILLY: I think it’s a worst in history looking at the Jefferson-Adams mudslinging which was pretty vicious. But not on this level with the press able to get out in a heartbeat anything the press wants to.
GINGRICH: Yes. And a good friend of mine — who writes a blog in Minnesota wrote a piece Tuesday about what he called a news media coup d’etat. He said he’s seen bias before. But on Friday he watched virtually the entire news media attempt to destroy the candidate of one of the two parties.
O’REILLY: But they have to report these things, particularly when they’re on tape, don’t they not?
GINGRICH: They don’t have to report them for 72 continuous hours. They don’t have to take a poll at the peak of the reporting. I mean, you know, the poll that came out on Monday was totally false. And the other part of it is, they get to choose. You have WikiLeaks saying things such as the things going to be unusual later on which is, Hillary Clinton goes to give a secret speech to a Brazilian bank and says, my dream is open trade and open borders.
O’REILLY: Yes. We will get into that — on this.
GINGRICH: Right. But that, actually, if you think about it is an amazing comment. Which doesn’t get the same kind of coverage.
O’REILLY: It’s not going to get the coverage. Because the salacious stuff always will. It always will. You have been through it. Most politicians have been through it to some extent. When you have accusations that are sensational, sensational, all right. It always overrides policy.
GINGRICH: But think about it, but you have been around long enough, it would never have happened to John F. Kennedy.
GINGRICH: It would never happen to FDR.
GINGRICH: Because there was a convention.
O’REILLY: Yes, and that’s broken down.
GINGRICH: And it’s totally broken.
GINGRICH: And that may be the reality we have to live with for 20 or 30 years.
O’REILLY: It is. It’s not going to change. That’s why good people aren’t stepping up. Nobody is perfect. Everybody has things in their past that they don’t want to be on the front page of the “New York Times” or whatever. But there is a degree. And I do believe the press has a responsibility to bring the truth to the American people. Do you feel that’s happening now? Is the press bringing the truth?
GINGRICH: I think journalism in the sense that you grew up with and I grew up with has totally collapsed. And I think the New York Times — has been the leader of this collapsed. The “New York Times” are one time — even if it was left wing with Castro and with Stalin in the ’30s, it was nonetheless a place that would have had very serious reporting. The stuff they have been doing recently on Trump, some of it is an absurdity. And it gets blown up.
O’REILLY: Do you want to give me an example of absurdity?
GINGRICH: Well, example is, woman who said in the middle of a photo shoot, she thought that she was touched by the photographer’s camera but then decide, no, she thought it would have been Donald Trump.
O’REILLY: I don’t even get into that stuff, because if it’s filed, you know, if there is something filed and the police are investigating, then, but anybody can say anything at any time.
GINGRICH: But the whole weight of the assault on Trump are people who never filed a charge, never made a complaint. But the “New York Times” has brought them altogether and they take something and clearly what he said on tape bass stupid and despicable, I’m glad he apologized for it. But this other stuff now is just a piling on, what else can we manufacture?
O’REILLY: The FOX News poll we will going to give asks a question, is the tape on “Access Hollywood” a game breaker or not? I am going to give you the results in a moment. But you will remember that John McCain was put through this mill in an alleged affair that nobody ever proved. Now, that was a front page story eight years ago.
GINGRICH: Well, I was with Meghan McCain on “OUTNUMBERED TODAY,” and she was reminding people that the stuff that was done to her father is exactly the kind of scurrilous smear that is now being done to Trump. And notice it’s very one-sided.
O’REILLY: Trump does have a history of being a ladies man. I mean, so John McCain doesn’t have that history. Trump does. But the crux of the matter is, the American people getting the truth about both Clinton and the Trump.
O’REILLY: Are they getting the truth?
GINGRICH: I’m aware to stipulate that the candidate I like Donald Trump has on occasion been crude, if they are willing to stipulate the Hillary is both dishonest and corrupt. But they don’t want to stipulate that.
O’REILLY: They, being whom?
GINGRICH: The “New York Times,” “The Washington Post.”
O’REILLY: No, they’re not going to do that. They’re not going to make a comparison of the behavior between — and the reason they’re not going to do it is, Bill Clinton. You know, his —
GINGRICH: But I’m not talking about sex. I’m talking about a woman who says 39 times to the FBI, I can’t remember and then seems to remember everything in a debate. I mean, she’s just totally dishonest.
O’REILLY: Well, okay —
GINGRICH: You may not want to render that judgment, I’m here as a guest, I’m rendering that judgment.
O’REILLY: You know, all I’m going to say is that when you have an emotional campaign with people, you know, being whipped up into a frenzy for one reason or another.
O’REILLY: Then you lose all clarity. There is no clarity anymore. And my Talking Points was that both of these candidates now are damaged. They have been damaged by the media or their own actions. You the voter, you can decide that. But they’re damaged people. I mean, the inauguration, is that going to be a celebration?
GINGRICH: Look. No. But also as a historian.
GINGRICH: Okay. One of the chances in the late 18th Century is mama, where’s my pa, going to the White House, ha, ha, ha.
GINGRICH: Lincoln at one point was called a gorilla. I mean the news attacks on Lincoln was pretty good.
O’REILLY: But it wasn’t this kind of a national forum where everybody hears all of the terrible details?
GINGRICH: We are all going to have to grow into a world in which everybody has Facebook live, everybody has YouTube, everybody has a personal camera. I mean, it’s a different world.
O’REILLY: There is no privacy. And there is no dignitary anymore. That’s for sure. Last question.
The polls say Bill Clinton is personally popular after all.
O’REILLY: You know, so it looks to me like we might be going like France, that personal behavior, conduct, doesn’t really resonate that much anymore.
GINGRICH: It could be true. It’s also a fact that Bill Clinton is one of the most charming people you and I have ever met. It’s a skill he developed in Arkansas. It’s very real. He’s very good at it. But I would suggest to you that his wife is not nearly as charming. And if you notice, all these assaults have weighed her down. And I think it has made this a much closer race than they thought it would be.
O’REILLY: All right. Mr. Speaker, thanks for coming on. We appreciate it. And I’m looking forward to reading your novel. It’s a contemporary — “Treason.” It’s a contemporary story.
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