Gingrich fires back at Pelosi over threat

Newt Gingrich said that a threat from ex-Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to disclose information she learned while serving on an ethics committee investigating him during his time as Speaker of the House would "totally abuse the ethics process" and violate rules of the House of Representatives.

"I want to thank Speaker Pelosi for what I regard as an early Christmas gift," Gingrich said at a press conference in Manhattan Monday.

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Gingrich denounced the threat from Pelosi, who is now the minority leader in the House, as "a fundamental violation of the rules of the House," and said that if Pelosi were to disclose details of the investigation, it would expose the "tainted ethics process the House was engaged in." He also called for the House to condemn Pelosi if she were to reveal anything from the ethics probe.

Pelosi told Talking Points Memo that she would reveal damaging material about Gingrich "when the time is right."

“One of these days we’ll have a conversation about Newt Gingrich,” Pelosi said. “When the time is right. … I know a lot about him. I served on the investigative committee that investigated him, four of us locked in a room in an undisclosed location for a year. A thousand pages of his stuff."

But responding to Gingrich's comments, a spokesman for Pelosi said the former Speaker was "clearly referring to the extensive amount of information that is in the public record, including the comprehensive committee report with which the public may not be fully aware.”

Pelosi served on the ethics committee that sanctioned Gingrich for violating tax law and lying to an investigative panel when he claimed tax-exempt status for a college course he ran for political purposes. Gingrich agreed to a $300,000 fine and admitted that he submitted inaccurate statements to the committee, but maintained Monday that the majority of the charges "were repudiated as false."

Gingrich said that Pelosi's suggestion that she would reveal information from that investigation underscored that the ethics charges were politically motivated.

"It tells you how capriciously political that committee was," Gingrich said.


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