Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich doesn’t think President-elect Donald Trump should feel any obligation to speak to the press when he takes over the White House in January.
“The news media so totally disgraced itself in this election, if I were Trump I would just say, ‘No,'” Gingrich told USA Today’s Susan Page on Tuesday. “And if the White House Correspondents Association doesn’t like it, I’d say, ‘Fine, disband.'”
And so far, it appears Trump has taken Gingrich’s advice. The president-elect has not held a press conference since July.
The Georgia lawmaker, who has been a longtime supporter of Trump, said the billionaire businessman should instead handpick questions he would like to answer from the public. However, though Gingrich sided with Trump on media matters, he did acknowledge the incoming president has his flaws.
Specifically — his Twitter account.
As an example, Gingrich chided Trump for a recent tweet alleging millions of people voted illegally in the Nov. 8 election.
In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 27, 2016
“The president of the United States can’t randomly tweet without having somebody check it out,” Gingrich, who believes there’s no evidence to support the tweet, said. “It makes you wonder about whatever else he’s doing. It undermines much more than a single tweet.”
Regardless, Gingrich is standing by the Manhattan billionaire. During his conversation with Page, the former speaker said the “best single thing” Trump did was choose campaign CEO Steve Bannon, a former Breitbart executive, as his chief strategist and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus as his chief of staff.
“You have a very hard-line conservative warrior as your chief strategist, and you have a really sophisticated manager of the establishment as your chief of staff,” Gingrich said. “Naming either one of them by themselves would’ve been a mistake. But the two of them combined gives him as good a team as you’re gonna get to try in a sophisticated way to synthesize what he’s trying to get done.”
And as he’s been doing for days now, Gingrich had to continue his caustic tirade against 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, a top contender for secretary of state. Trump and Romney met Tuesday night for a second time.
“I think it’s outrageous,” Gingrich said. “Romney said vile and vicious things. Romney opposed him all the way up to the election. In my judgment, Romney will be a very high risk … because I think Romney has zero interest in the Trump revolution and every interest in re-establishing his own credentials.”