POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Gingrich says GOP could be in for a bad time in fall election | VailDaily.com

POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Gingrich says GOP could be in for a bad time in fall election

WASHINGTON – Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, an architect of the Republican takeover of the House in 1994, says incumbents sometimes forget they are in office to change the government, not to be changed by it.And he is worried that the GOP is in for a bad time in the fall elections.”When you get poll after poll telling you basically the same thing, you have to respect the right of the American people to say they want change,” Gingrich said on “Fox News Sunday.”An AP-Ipsos poll this month found that just 30 percent of the public approves of the job performance of the GOP-led Congress. By a 49-33 margin, the public favored Democrats over Republicans when asked which party should control Congress. That was the largest margin the Democrats have enjoyed in AP-Ipsos polling.”I think it’s very dangerous to stay on defense when you get these kinds of numbers,” Gingrich said. “I would hope they would take a real message to the American people, which is not about general direction. It’s about performance and it’s about specific components of what they’re doing.”Gingrich was critical of the failure of immigration legislation in the Senate to reflect what he called the nation’s desire for border control and other stringent measures. He also questioned the extent of the hurricane recovery in New Orleans.”It’s going to be really bad by September when we go back and have a one-year review and we realize how much of New Orleans is not fixed,” he said.House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., and Majority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, have the potential to turn around the GOP’s fortunes in the House, Gingrich said. And President Bush has a role to play as well, he said.”I am saying that if the president would aggressively look at the failures of performance of the bureaucracy and lead the Congress toward changing the bureaucracy, that the country could, in fact, get very excited again about the opportunity to make government work,” he said.Vail, Colorado

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