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Gingrich and the Courts: No, Sir, That Ain’t History

3 min read

Newt Gingrich is fond of reminding listeners that he was a history professor. As with most things the former Speaker of the House says, there’s a bit of truth and a lot of exaggeration in that line of his résumé.

In 1970, Gingrich joined the history department at West Georgia College as an assistant professor. In 1974, he moved to the geography department where he helped found an interdisciplinary environmental studies program. After eight years at West Georgia, the 35-year-old Gingrich was denied tenure and he abandoned his planned professorial profession.

The same year he departed West Georgia College, Gingrich took his third shot at Georgia’s Sixth Congressional District seat. With the incumbent’s decision not to seek reelection, Gingrich successfully defeated his Democratic challenger and went on to spend 20 years in the House of Representatives, including four years wielding the powerful Speaker’s gavel.
The brief biographical sketch provided above casts legitimate doubt on the strength of Gingrich’s scholarly claims. Not one to let the facts stand in the way of a good story, Gingrich relies on his paltry professorial past to intimidate opponents and convince voters that he is the thinking man’s Republican and thus more intellectually equipped to take on his fellow former professor — Barack Obama.
During an appearance on the CBS Sunday morning mainstay, Face the Nation (picture above), presidential candidate Gingrich demonstrated how his time studying history did nothing to improve his woeful understanding of the separation of powers and checks and balances — two of the principal pillars upon which our Republic is built. ………………