In 2008 former House Speaker Newt Gingrich appeared in a TV ad created by Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project with then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to urge action on anthropogenic climate change. Many conservatives were disappointed.
However, on Tuesday’s “Special Report” on the Fox News Channel, Gingrich — now a candidate for the Republican nomination for president — admitted it was a mistake for him to appear in the ad during the show’s “Center Seat” segment.
“First of all, that is probably the dumbest single thing I’ve done in years,” Gingrich said. “It is inexplicable that somebody used to say, ‘You know, there aren’t enough hay wagons to stand on to get people to understand that.’ You just need to relax and go, that was dumb.”
Panelist Charles Krauthammer asked Gingrich if he was being held hostage when the ad was filmed. Gingrich responded that he just made a mistake.
“No, that was dumb,” Gingrich said. “I was trying to do something I failed to do. I do think it’s important for conservative to be in the middle of the debate over the environment.”
Gingrich then described a book he co-authored, titled “Contract with the Earth,” which he said outlined “a pro-market, pro-entrepreneur, innovative environmentalism.”
He then said, “I don’t know whether global warming is occurring,” noting, “the vast majority of National Academy of Sciences says it is, a minority says it is not. Science is not actually voted on. Science is a function of truth.”
Despite declaring that he was not on board with the “big government” approach championed by Gore and others, the former House Speaker didn’t deny that global warming might be occurring.
“The earth’s temperatures go up and down over geologic times over and over again,” he said.
“I’m agnostic. But what I am saying and I would say to all of my conservative friends — don’t assume automatically the National Academy of Sciences is wrong. And I would say to the National Academy of Sciences don’t assume that vote by renowned scientists is necessarily true.”