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Romney for President

"History Lesson" +
:30 ad run starting Jan. 28, 2012 in FL.

TEXT: “’NBC Nightly News,’ January 21, 1997”

[Broadcast Intro Music] Tom Brokaw: “Good evening. Newt Gingrich, who came to power, after all, preaching a higher standard in American politics, a man who brought down another Speaker on ethics accusations, tonight he has on his own record the judgment of his peers, Democrat and Republican alike. By an overwhelming vote, they found him guilty of ethics violations; they charged him a very large financial penalty, and they raised – several of them – raised serious questions about his future effectiveness.”

Romney (voiceover): I’m Mitt Romney and I approve this message.

Notes: According to the Romney campaign press release,

In 1997, Democrats and Republicans overwhelmingly found Newt Gingrich guilty of ethics violations. The ethics violations resulted in a large financial penalty and questions about his effectiveness as Speaker.

“Whether it was an unprecedented ethics reprimand, his erratic leadership style, or his resignation in disgrace at the hands of his own party, it is understandable why Speaker Gingrich would want to re-write history. As an historian, however, he should know that such efforts usually fail.” – Ryan Williams, Romney Campaign Spokesman

Newt 2012's response:

Another Big Lie From the Romney Campaign

The Romney campaign is up with another false ad attacking Speaker Gingrich.  This time their false ad shows news coverage from 1997 after the House of Representatives voted to reprimand Speaker Gingrich.

What the Romney campaign is hoping the American people don’t remember is that in 1999, the IRS cleared Speaker Gingrich of the substance of the ethics committee investigation. 

The findings from the IRS were so conclusive that it led renown investigative reporter Brooks Jackson to remark, ““it turns out [Gingrich] was right and those who accused him of tax fraud were wrong.”

Watch the CNN report of Newt Gingrich’s exoneration here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMpBBRUCMd8

As Paul Harvey always said, that’s “the rest of the story.”

Facts About the Ethics Committee Investigation of Newt Gingrich


1.      Anderson, Curt "Ethics Committee Drops Last of 84 Charges Against Gingrich" Associated Press Washington Post Sunday, October 11, 1998; Page A13 http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/govt/leadership/stories/101198.htm

2.      In the Matter Representative Newt Gingrich  House Report 105-1http://ethics.house.gov/committee-report/matter-representative-newt-gingrich

3.      Pine, Art & Miller, Alan “IRS Clears Gingrich But Blurs Fundraising Line” Los Angeles Times February 27, 1999; http://articles.latimes.com/1999/feb/27/news/mn-12206 

4.      Jackson, Brooks CNN Inside Politics, February 3, 1999


Also a response from NBC:

NBC sent a letter to the Romney campaign asking for removal of all NBC News material from their campaign ads.  Tom Brokaw individually issued a statement saying he was "extremely uncomfortable with the extended use of my personal image in this political ad."