[Congressional Record (Bound Edition), Volume 145 (1999), Part 5]
[Page 6304]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office, www.gpo.gov]


  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Everett). Under a previous order of the 
House, the gentleman from California (Mr. Cunningham) is recognized for 
5 minutes.
  Mr. CUNNINGHAM. Mr. Speaker, I come to correct the record, for a 
politically motivated injustice. It is titled ``Newt Gingrich 
Vindicated, But No One Knows It,'' by Brent Bozell. I would like to 
read and summarize this article for the Record on an issue of basic 
  ``The judgement is in. After 3\1/2\ years of investigation, the 
Internal Revenue Service has cleared Newt Gingrich and his allied 
nonprofit groups of any violation of tax laws in the controversy over 
his television history course, `Renewing American Civilization.'
  ``So after having run countless news reports highlighting the 
accusations that ultimately forced Newt Gingrich to pay $300,000 in 
fines,'' did the media correct the record?
  I would like to let my colleagues, maybe for the first time, 
understand and know what Newt Gingrich was about. In our Republican 
Conference, the then Speaker, Newt Gingrich, and his lawyers met with 
the entire conference. They said that he would be exonerated 100 
percent in this. There was no chance of him being found guilty. But it 
would take one or more years of court trials and dragging the 
Republican Party through this event. The Speaker stood up and said, ``I 
am not going to do this, because we are focusing on a balanced budget, 
on saving Medicare, on having welfare reform, and having tax relief. 
And if I go through this court case and don't give the Democrats their 
pound of flesh by paying this fine, then we will not have a balanced 
budget or save Medicare or have welfare reform.'' And he agreed to pay 
that fine. That is the kind of a gentleman Newt Gingrich was.
  Do you think that the news media after this was announced did 
anything or said one word? Let me quote from the article again.
  ``ABC, CBS and NBC devoted exactly zero seconds to Newt Gingrich's 
vindication. Only CNN's Brooks Jackson filed a TV report, on the early-
evening show `Inside Politics.'
  ``He then showed old footage of Democrats David Bonior of Michigan, 
in which he said, `Mr. Gingrich engaged in a pattern of tax fraud,' and 
John Lewis of Georgia, `We now have a Speaker under investigation for 
lying to the outside counsel investigating his involvement in a massive 
tax fraud.'
  ``Jackson quoted from the IRS decision: `The (Gingrich ``Renewing 
American Civilization'') course taught principles from American 
civilization that could be used by each American in everyday life, 
whether the person is a welfare recipient, the head of a large 
corporation or a politician. The course was not biased toward 
particular politicians or a particular party. The facts show the class 
was much more than a political platform.' Of course, that was clear to 
anyone who watched the course.''
  And I quote from Mr. Gingrich: I urge my colleagues, the gentleman 
from Missouri (Mr. Gephardt), the gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Lewis), 
the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Bonior), ``I urge my colleagues to go 
back and read their statements and watch how they said them with no 
facts, based on nothing more than a desire, and I quote, to politically 
destroy a colleague.''
  The article continues. ``But the damage wasn't done simply by devious 
politicians. It was done by the media itself. National Public Radio 
reporter Mara Liasson justified the event by saying that he only did 
what Newt Gingrich did to Jim Wright. `Bonior learned his lesson from 
him,' she said.
  ``To appreciate the media's antagonism--then, now and probably 
forever--toward Newt Gingrich, compare their treatment of him with 
their coverage of a real crook, Webster Hubbell. They roasted Newt when 
he was charged and then ignored him when he was cleared. Hubbell was 
celebrated when he was cleared of tax evasion charges filed by Ken 
Starr, but when a Federal court reinstated the charges on appeal, the 
networks aired no coverage.
  ``Let's get this straight. Webster Hubbell embezzled half a million 
dollars from his law firm partners in Arkansas. After he resigned from 
the Justice Department in disgrace, the President's friends paid him 
almost another million dollars for, quote, supposed jobs that asked for 
no work, money he pays next to zero taxes on.''
  I would ask my colleagues to take a look at what they said in this 
well, and I would ask them to apologize publicly and in writing to the