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Newt Gingrich tried to prevent Ron Paul's 1996 return to Congress.

Kyle Rogers, Charleston Conservative Examiner

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Nov. 30, 2011

Gingrich and Paul have a history of conflict. In 1996, Newt Gingrich became Speaker of the House and aggresively urged fellow Republicans to tone down their conservative views. Gingrich was calling for the Republican party to modernize. It was at this time that Gingrich tried to keep Ron Paul from returning to congress.

Paul had decided to run for Congress in 1996 after a ten year absence. Gingrich went to great lengths to try to stop Paul in Republican primary. Ron Paul's primary opponent, incumbent Greg Laughlin, was a former Democrat. Newt Gingrich recruited Laughlin to the Republican camp in 1995 by promising him a position in the Republican controlled US House. Gingrich recruited fifty congressmen and then Texas Governor George W. Bush to endorse Laughlin over Paul.

Ron Paul dug up statements by Gingrich and the RNCC attacking Laughlin in 1994. He published these statements in newspaper ads. Paul also enlisted the aid of Pat Buchanan, Nolan Ryan, and Steve Forbes for his campaign.

Paul won the primary and went on to win the general election. He has retained the seat ever since.

Today the Ron Paul campaign released a two and a half minute commercial portraying Gingrich as a serial flip flopper. The commercial has several excerpts from Rush Limbaugh and other conservatives.

As Newt Gingrich rises to be the media's latest flavor of the week, the other candidates are also taking shots.

Gingrich has been pushing strict border enforcement in several recent appearances. Michelle Bachman released a letter, signed by Gingrich in 2004, that promotes amnesty for illeagle aliens.

Mitt Romney attacked Newt Gingrich as a "lifelong politician" who wouldn't know how to run the economy.