Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is rarely at a loss for words, unless what he says is edited by Rachel Maddow.
On her cable show last night, Maddow swooned in response to MSNBC colleague and avowed "extreme left" socialist Lawrence O'Donnell's alleged success in an exchange with Gingrich on "Meet the Press" this past Sunday. (video clip after page break)
Maddow, who is openly gay while remaining a closeted socialist, apparently felt it was necessary to prop up O'Donnell's argument, so she edited away most of Gingrich's response --
O'DONNELL: The problem for Boehner is, how does he give on rates? He said this the other day -- "I oppose tax rate increases because tax rate increases cost American jobs. That gives you no room to give on rates." It is, by the way, not an original thought. Who said this? -- "The tax increase will kill jobs and lead to a recession and the recession will force people out of work and onto unemployment and actually increase the deficit"? That's Newt Gingrich in 1993 on the Clinton tax increase. And those of us who were working on the other side of that tax increase, Newt, have been waiting for your apology for 20 years for being completely wrong about that.
GINGRICH: Well, I don't agree with you.
O'DONNELL: Well, with the -- but the economy soared, no one lost a job ...
O'DONNELL: ... because of that tax increase.
O'DONNELL: There was no recession. You said there would be a recession
GINGRICH: You now see the case.
O'DONNELL: There was no recession.
GINGRICH: The fact ...
... whereupon Maddow pulled the plug on Gingrich, lest any of her viewers were exposed to the horrors of a dissenting opinion. Here is what Gingrich said that Maddow decided was too dicey for her audience (link to entire segment at "Meet the Press" site) --
GINGRICH: The fact is, if you look at all the indicators the day I was elected speaker, virtually all the economic growth occurs after the Republicans take control, virtually all the increase in the stock, in fact all of the increase in the stock market is after the Republicans take control ...
O'DONNELL: You did not reduce the rates, Newt.
GINGRICH: And, and when we balanced -- wait a second ...
O'DONNELL: You said the rates would cause a recession.
GINGRICH: When we balanced the -- when we balanced the budget, we balanced the budget with a tax cut, not a tax in-, four consecutive balanced budgets with a tax cut, not a tax increase.
O'DONNELL: A tiny tax cut compared to the biggest tax increase in history which is what Bill Clinton did. You didn't dismantle it.
To strengthen her case, Maddow showed clips of Gingrich and other Republicans in August 1993 warning against the Clinton tax hikes, followed by a NBC News report on the economy soaring ... in January 1999. Left unmentioned by Maddow and that NBC news segment was the "tiny tax cut" two years earlier that helped trigger an economic boom, bolstered by a peace dividend from the Cold War's demise and the initial surge of the high-tech revolution.
Former anchor Tom Brokaw appears in that "NBC Nightly News" report from Jan. 29, 1999, titled "Best of Times."
"Think about it," Brokaw says. "There probably have never been better times than these when so many people are doing so well and an economy that just gets stronger and stronger. The latest measure are the numbers that are in for the end of 1998 and they're sensational." Filling in the details was NBC reporter Mike Jensen -- "the numbers are astonishing, the economy growing at the fastest pace in more than two years ... There's a job for everybody who wants one, interest rates are incredibly low, and there's hardly any inflation. ... More good news, paychecks growing at the fastest clip in five years, up almost three and a half percent last year alone."
Noteworthy about the timing of the NBC report, its marked distance from the Clinton tax hikes aside -- it aired only two weeks before Clinton's trial in the Senate on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. During the preceding 12 months, the news was dominated by two major stories -- the Lewinsky scandal and that amazing economy, the latter a helpful pretext for liberals in media to divert attention from the scandal.
"Now that we are debating trying some of the Clinton era economic policies again," Maddow said, "it's a helpful historical thing to remember who was wrong about what the effect would be of those policies."
Operative word here -- "some of the Clinton era economic policies." But seeing how they supposedly produced the "Best of Times" and an economy as conjured by Willy Wonka, why not replicate all of Clinton's economic policies? Specifically being sure to include those higher taxes that President Obama has helpfully pointed out will cost middle-class families $2,000 annually if tax rates revert to their Clinton levels.
Also worth noting is the caption accompanying a photo of Gingrich and O'Donnell during Maddow's segment on their exchange. "Lawrence V. Taxes" the caption reads -- as if O'Donnell is the one opposing higher taxes.