Newt Gingrich joined The Cats Roundtable to break down a myriad of topics, such as the growing international criticism of China, and the spread of the coronavirus from Europe to the U.S. He also discussed what Michael Flynn’s trial means for conservatives, and unravels the divide hiding in the 3-trillion dollar Democratic relief package proposed by the House this past week.
China is facing renewed criticism for hiding the virus from the world and misleading other countries about the severity of the crisis.
Gingrich told The Cats Roundtable that the spread of the coronavirus coincided with the growing influence of Beijing around the world. While Trump ordered a ban on travel from China on February 2nd, countries with closer ties to China, such as Italy, did not, leading to the virus taking a devastating hold. Italy, along with 14 other EU countries, is a member of the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative, and is home to many Chinese businesses.
Gingrich believes that the current crisis has been exacerbated by China, and is a reckoning for how influential Beijing has become.
” I think it’s only now beginning to sink in how big a problem this is going to be,” he said.
When Trump ordered a ban on travel from Europe in March, the President faced criticism for not acting quicker, particularly by New York Governor Cuomo this past April, when announcing the outbreak in New York had likely originated in Italy.
Gingrich argued that if Trump had “tried to intervene aggressively at the very beginning” then the Democratic party, already up in arms about the Chinese travel ban, would “go to war.”
He told The Cats Roundtable that Cuomo and New York City Mayor De Blasio had “totally underestimated this problem” and by downplaying the crisis “substantially made it worse.” Though both knew that New York was a major entryway for airlines coming from Europe and that the subways could be a huge vector of the disease, neither acted when they could “have closed this thing down.”
As the debate over the coronavirus continues to rage, the House passed a 3-trillion dollar Democratic spending bill this week. But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has spoken out against the bill, and President Trump has threatened to veto it, calling it “dead on arrival.”
Speaking as a former Speaker of the House, Gingrich sees the relief package as a tactic of Speaker Pelosi.
“You have to see this bill as a very shrewd effort on her part to motivate the left,” he said. “I think she’s beginning to realize that Joe Biden’s not going to motivate anybody, and she has got to find some issues that will get people on her side sufficiently excited for them to go vote.”
He criticized the bill for allowing “illegal immigrants to take a job” before U.S. workers, even as 36 million people have filed for unemployment.
While the spending bill was being debated earlier this week, a federal judge delayed dismissing the criminal charges against former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.
Gingrich told The Cats Roundtable that the handling of the Flynn case reinforces his conclusions that the bureaucracy needs to be fixed.
“I have thought for years the system is corrupt,” he explained. “I think that we underestimate both how far to the left the bureaucracy is, and how sick large parts of it are.”
He said that the message from prosecutors and from the judges themselves was clear: if you’re a conservative, watch your back.
“They want to send a signal to every conservative in the country,” Gingrich told The Cats Roundtable. “You’re at risk financially, you’re at risk of going to jail.”
Gingrich called Flynn’s saga a piece of a larger “cultural civil war” that uses the rule of law to attack political opponents, adding that “reelecting President Trump is a key part” to reestablishing a fair justice system, especially with the President’s role in appointing federal judges.
“I think if he gets reelected, he will then have four more years with a great deal more knowledge than he had when he first got here,” Gingrich said. “We’ll be a dramatically healthier country four years from now.”