Speaking on Monday, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said that the House Freedom Caucus preserved fellow Republicans in the House of Representatives when the caucus refused to support the American Health Care Act. The bill, which received support from President Donald Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan, had but 17 percent of public support.
 
Speaking to host Neil Cavuto, Gingrich said, “Not voting on Friday was really good. The Democrats lost their majority for the first time in 40 years after they tried to push through Hillarycare. The Democrats lost the majority again in 2010 after they pushed through Obamacare. If we had all the House Republicans line up and vote yes on a bill that was at 17 percent approval — that means four out of five Americans were not approving —  I will guarantee you the Democrats would have had a field day.”
 
Gingrich added, “So I think the Freedom Caucus whether they intended to or not may have saved House Republican from a vote that would have been potentially very destructive.”
 
As for Republican strategy going forward, Gingrich said, “Now everybody ought to just get over it. Look at the future. Let’s learn the lessons and recognize it took Reagan eight months to pass a tax cut. It took us 18 months to pass welfare reform. It took Pelosi and Obama eight months to pass Obamacare. We’re not in a rush here. We don’t have to get everything done by Easter.”
 
Gingrich called on Republicans to exert their efforts on producing a significant tax cut. “I’d rather have a big tax cut with a lot of jobs than a small tax cut that the green eye- shade accountants can be happy with that don’t create any jobs.” Gingrich told the FOX Business Network’s Neil Cavuto.
 
As for Trump's plans to update America's infrastructure, Gingrich said, “The first thing they ought to do is open up the whole issue of infrastructure.  You can get at least half the Democratic Party to work with you to pass an infrastructure bill.  You can start to build a Trump majority, which is bigger than the Republican majority.”
 
In November 1994, Republicans took control of the House of Representatives for the first time in decades. Gingrich took the helm as Speaker and offered the historic "Contract with America." One of the principal planks of the Contract was welfare reform. The Personal Responsibility Act was intended to discourage illegitimacy and teen pregnancy by reforming and cutting cash welfare and related programs. It was passed by the House on March 23, 1995, and passed the US Senate on September 19, 1995. It was vetoed, however, by Bill Clinton. On August 22, 1996, the alternative Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act which offered many of the same policies, was enacted.
 
As for the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, Barack Obama said in a February 2009 speech that he intended to push for healthcare reform. Initially, there was some cooperation on the part of Republicans with Democrats who were drafting legislation. As the months rolled on, Republican resistance grew. There were some prolife Democrats who were also opposed. However, once the prolife Democrats were convinced to support the bill, it was finally passed in March 2010 and signed into law.

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Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat and the editor of Spero News.

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