Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich addressed the crowd at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland on Wednesday night. In doing so, he warned voters about the threat of “radical Islamic terrorists” and Hillary Clinton‘s “suicidal dishonesty.” His speech was proceeded by remarks from his wife, Callista Gingrich.
Before moving into his prepared speech, Gingrich veered off-prompter to respond to Ted Cruz’s earlier non-endorsement. Calling Donald Trump‘s invitation to speak “generous,” the former Speaker jabbed, “Ted Cruz said, ‘You can vote your conscience for anyone who will uphold the Constitution.’ In this election, there is only one candidate who will uphold the Constitution. If you want to protect the Constitution of the United States, the only possible candidate this fall is the Trump/Pence Republican ticket.”
Gingrich moved swiftly to “keeping America safe.” He stated that Trump would make a good President because he’s not afraid to “tell the truth” about national security. “We are at war,” Gingrich said. “We are at war with radical Islamists. They are determined to kill us. They are stronger than we admit, and there is no substitute for victory.” Hillary Clinton, Gingrich said, downplays the threat of “Islamic terror.”
“We need to tell the truth about the danger. If our enemies had our way, not one woman in this room could define her future. If our enemies had our way, gays, lesbian, and transgender citizens would be put to death as they are today in the Islamic state in Iran. If our enemies had our way, every person on earth would be subject to conversion by the sword and to a cruel and violent system of law. There would be no individual liberty. There would be no equality. There would be no freedom.”
Gingrich went on to list every reported terrorist attack in the last 37 days, including those in Nice, Orlando, Istanbul, and Baghdad. Though he said he wanted to “be very clear” that he believes “we have nothing to fear from the vast majority of Muslims,” we should not allow Muslim refugees into America. Gingrich’s tone then turned foreboding:
“The truth is, although we are losing the war with radical Islamists, we are very lucky … The danger is even worse than Sept 11 when 19 hijackers murdered almost 3,000 Americans. The worse case scenario is losing an American city to terrorists armed with weapons of mass destruction. Instead of losing 3,000 people in one morning, we could lose 300,000. Instead of losing 2 great buildings, we could lose block after block after block to a nuclear event.”
Gingrich also warned of the threat of “weapons of mass destruction,” which eerily echoed themes of the George W. Bush administration. While threatening that Clinton, along with President Obama, is lying to the American people about being able to safely screen Syrian refugees, Gingrich told the crowd: “This is not about politics. The cost of Hillary’s dishonesty could the the loss of America as we know it.”