By Sean Whaley, Nevada News Bureau: Republican presidential contender Newt Gingrich told a cheering crowd here today that he is the only GOP candidate with the knowledge and experience to get the U.S. back on track after what will be four years of failed policies by President Barack Obama.
Gingrich, a former speaker of the House, is in Nevada ahead of Saturday’s First in the West Republican caucus.
The other three GOP candidates still in the race, front-runner Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Rick Santorum, are also making stops in Nevada.
Gingrich appeared at a crowded Great Basin Brewing Co. restaurant here, speaking for 25 minutes before heading south for an event in Las Vegas later today.
If supporters get the word out about his qualifications, “we will have a remarkably good Saturday,” he said.
He started out by criticizing Romney for his comments today about not needing to concern himself about the “very poor” because they have a safety net in place to protect them.
“I am fed up with politicians in either party dividing Americans against each other,” Gingrich said. “I am running to be the president of all of the American people, and I am concerned about all of the American people.”
Gingrich also took time to criticize the president for bowing to “radical extremists” to prevent the Keystone Pipeline project from going forward at a time when jobs are needed and the Iranians are threatening to close the Strait of Hormuz.
“I’ve already said, on the very first day, I will sign an executive order authorizing the Keystone Pipeline,” he said.
Gingrich also touched on two issues critical to Nevada: high unemployment and a high home foreclosure rate. To reverse these trends Republicans cannot lose U.S. Senate seats and it is important to hold the seat in Nevada, he said.
Gingrich did not mention U.S. Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., by name. He is being challenged by Rep. Shelley Berkley, D-Nev.
“I have a very simple proposition for the American people” Gingrich said. “Think how much better your Christmas will be when Obama is leaving and you have a new jobs oriented president.”
Gingrich said he will ask Congress, if Republicans win majorities in both the House and Senate in November, to stay in session on Jan. 3 so it can repeal the federal Health Care Law, the Dodd-Frank Act, which is “killing housing” in Nevada, and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which he called “all red tape weighing down business and making us less competitive.”
As president, Gingrich said he would eliminate the capital gains tax to encourage more investment and also modernize unemployment compensation by requiring beneficiaries to get training so that “we will never again pay someone for 99 weeks for doing nothing.”
Gingrich said he would also permanently abolish the death tax and establish a 12.5 percent corporate tax rate. He would also give Americans the opportunity to use the current tax code or alternatively pay a 15 percent flat tax.
Gingrich also said he would seek to replace the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency with an “Environmental Solutions Agency” that uses common sense and that “collaborates with local communities instead of dictates to them.”
Newt Gingrich says he will approve the Keystone Pipeline project on his first day in office:
020112Gingrich1 :21 the Keystone Pipeline.”
Gingrich says Americans will be better off with Obama being replaced with a jobs oriented president:
020112Gingrich2 :13 jobs oriented president.”
Gingrich says if his supporters get the word out, Saturday’s caucus will be good for his campaign:
020112Gingrich3 :32 remarkably good Saturday.”