Nancy Reagan Disputes Gingrich’s Quote Context on Ronald Reagan Passing “Torch” To HimSurprise, surprise: it now turns out that former First Lady Nancy Reagan has let it be known that former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is not using the quote Ronald Reagan made about supposedly passing the “torch” to Gingrich properly:
Calling himself “the legitimate heir to the Reagan movement,” Newt Gingrich recently cited a 1995 speech by Nancy Reagan in which the former First Lady said that her husband “passed on the torch” to him.
“In 1995, Nancy Reagan at the Goldwater Institute was very generous,” Gingrich told voters in Florida on Sunday. “And she said ‘Just as Barry gave the torch to Ronny, Ronny has passed on the torch to Newt.’”
But as NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports, Gingrich appears to be taking that comment out of context.
Sources close to Nancy Reagan said the speech itself was written by the host at the Goldwater Organization – where Mrs. Reagan delivered the remarks – and that she was referring generally to Congress and not specifically to the former Speaker, Mitchell reported on her MSNBC program.
Also: Mitchell is one of TV’s most solid reporters. She has long had excellent sources in the Reagan camp and among Washington bigwigs.
But the way our politics operates? This won’t matter. Increasingly, partisans — and factions of parties — create their own realities. They will call a fact a lie, immediately attack a reporter or news outlet if they don’t like a report etc. So unless Nancy Reagan holds a press conference some won’t believe it. And if she did, some people would probably demand to see her birth certificate and take a blood test to make sure it’s the real Nancy. This is one more example of a member of the GOP establishment keeping a distance from Gingrich.
Some fitting music: