President Obama should come out against the building of a community center and mosque close to Ground Zero in his press conference this morning, Newt Gingrich said, because the American people want to see “evenhandedness” on this issue.
“I think the American people are prepared to say don’t burn the Koran just as they wouldn’t want to burn the bible or any other religious document,” Gingrich told me. “But they are also prepared to say [to Obama] ‘Why don’t you be pretty blunt, be at least as blunt with Imam Rauf as you are with the pastor in Florida and tell him don’t do it.’”
The former speaker of the House also had some advice for the potential next speaker– Rep. John Boehner. Should Republicans win back the House – which pundits and poll numbers are saying is increasingly likely – Gingrich said Boehner needs to immediately reach out to Obama.
“I am certain that the willingness to try to find some common ground, not by compromising your principles, but by finding some things you can do together, would make a big difference to the country,” Gingrich said.
Gingrich made his seventh visit this election cycle to Iowa yesterday. But when I asked him about his possible presidential run he said he didn’t know.
“We’ll come back and talk to you about that early next year,” he said.
Watch my interview with Gingrich here and then weigh in below.