New York, NY, May 27, 2010 … Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich today assured the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) that he recognizes "the horror and evil of the Nazi regime" and did not intend a comparison between Nazis and Democratic leaders in his new book to be a statement of moral equivalence.
"We welcome Newt Gingrich's efforts to clarify his remarks both in the book and on his book tour," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "As we have said many times before, Holocaust or Nazi comparisons are inappropriate and have no place in American political discourse. After personally speaking with Newt, I believe that he understands this and will be more careful with his words in the future."
Mr. Foxman spoke to Mr. Gingrich by telephone this week from Krakow, Poland, where he was leading an ADL delegation which joined senior Israel Defense Forces officers on a tour of remembrance to historical sites and former concentration camps.
ADL had first raised concerns in a May 23 letter to Mr. Gingrich about his frequent use of Nazi comparisons and references to socialism, including a description in his book of the Obama Administration as a secular socialist machine that "represents as great a threat to America as Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union once did." Mr. Foxman wrote: "Regardless of how one feels about President Obama and his policies, comparing his administration – even indirectly – to Hitler's Germany or Stalin's Russia is profoundly offensive."
In his May 27 letter in response, Mr. Gingrich wrote, "As I told you on the phone, I recognize the horror and the evil of the Nazi regime and nothing in my new book To Save America should be interpreted as a statement of moral equivalence between totalitarian regimes and the secular-socialist left. My intent instead was to define the scale of the challenge to classic American civilization posed by secular-socialism."