DES MOINES, Iowa — Newt Gingrich has taken heat on the campaign trail from conservatives for filming a 2008 commercial on climate change with House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi.
But that was hardly the first time the Republican presidential candidate and former House speaker collaborated with Pelosi.
Gingrich co-sponsored 418 bills in Congress with Pelosi during the 12 years they served together in the House, according to the Library of Congress’s THOMAS database.
Gingrich was in Congress from 1979 to 1999. Pelosi has served since 1987.
As a matter of comparison, House Speaker John Boehner, who has served in Congress with Pelosi for more than 20 years, has only co-sponsored 104 bills with her.
Many of the bills Gingrich and Pelosi co-sponsored were hardly divisive: authorizing an award for Mother Teresa, giving a congressional gold medal to former President Gerald Ford and recognizing the 50th anniversary of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
But one piece of legislation could be problematic for Gingrich with conservatives: the Global Warming Prevention Act of 1989, which never made it out of committee.
The legislation declared that climate change was “a major threat to political stability, international security and economic prosperity.”
The bill could also make the pro-life community uneasy with language about the availability of “family planning services” that included a declaration that, “curbing world population growth will be critical to achieving the goals.”
And while it prohibited funds from going towards “involuntary sterilization or abortion,” it doesn’t appear the bill would have prevented “voluntary” cases of abortion.
R.C. Hammond, a spokesman for Gingrich, didn’t comment when reached by email.
Despite the television commercial and co-sponsoring bills together, it’s still not fair to call Gingrich and Pelosi allies. Pelosi on Monday told Talking Points Memo that she has dirt on Gingrich.
“I know a lot about him,” she said. “I served on the investigative committee that investigated him, four of us locked in a room in an undisclosed location for a year. A thousand pages of his stuff.”
And in a recent interview on Fox News, Gingrich admitted he regretted making the video with Pelosi on climate change.
“That is probably the dumbest single thing I’ve done in years,” Gingrich said.