Related Content: Newt Gingrich

Political Checklist: We've Hit the Debt Ceiling, Now What?

Web content

May 16, 2011

In this week's edition of the Political Checklist, Gwen Ifill and David Chalian examine why, if the nation has hit its limit for borrowing, has there been no outcry from the markets or the political system? Gwen suggests that Wall Street is well-aware that Congress is known for making politics out of the debt ceiling increase, but always raises the limit before it is too late. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said he can take extra measures and ensure that the government can borrow until August 2.

They also discuss the politics behind Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich's criticism of the House GOP-endorsed Medicare overhaul as "radical." Gwen compares 2011 version of Gingrich to Gingrich in the 1990s, when he was the bomb-thrower seeking to shake up the establishment. Gwen and David also express confusion about Gingrich's position on Medicare reform, and they aren't the only ones.

The Newt Gingrich Years

Vault Show

With the planned announcement this week that Republican Newt Gingrich will run for President in 2012, we look back to his sometimes tumultuous tenure as House Speaker in the 1990s beginning the week of the GOP landslide in the mid-term elections of 1994 on the heels of the Contract with America.

Ideology vs Idiocy: The Shutdown Showdown

Gwen's Take

As the shutdown showdown approached its third or fourth climax late this week, I found myself in Flint, Michigan, the former General Motors manufacturing powerhouse, where the unemployment rate still stands at nearly 12 percent and people can be forgiven for casting a skeptical eye on government.

But I was far enough away from Washington that I thought this would be a good time to test a pet hypothesis. The hysteria over the standoff threatening to cripple the national government was, I was convinced, a Washington obsession.

Rocks and Hard Places

Gwen's Take

Why Governing Is So Hard

Every four years as I set off to cover another Presidential election cycle, I secretly ask myself: why do any of these people want to be President?