Newt Gingrich: Transcript of ABC/Yahoo News Exclusive Interview


NEWT GINGRICH: Ja-- look at the jump you just made, okay? I mean, first of all, nobody knew anything about John Edwards' problems until they knew about John Edwards' problems. So you don't know about any potential nominee until you know about it.


NEWT GINGRICH: And so the answer is, you would like to not nominate somebody who has those problems. Ask the Democrats about the '92 campaign.


NEWT GINGRICH: I'm just saying, Bill Clinton came in with plenty of stuff. And Bill Clinton had plenty of problems for his entire presidency. So I think you-- you've gotta think through-- I hope that Herman Cain can explain it, I think the American public expects him to explain it. And we'll see what happens as he explains it. But-- this is, as you know, this is a business now of 24-hour news and 16 million bloggers, and who knows what's gonna happen next Tuesday.

JAKE TAPPER: One question I got via Twitter had to do with a Public Service Announcement you did with Nancy Pelosi on climate change. You recently responded that you were 'trying to make a point that we shouldn't be afraid to debate the left, even on the environment and obviously it was misconstrued'. But you say in the ad 'we do agree that our country needs to take action to address climate change'. so what exactly was misconstrued?

NEWT GINGRICH: Well first of all people see that and they jump to the conclusion that he's for capping trade which I opposed - 'the ad does not say anything about capping trade - 'no no, but I'm just saying that's what people jump to, okay? I've said to people, I think it is very reasonable and prudent to develop renewables - I am very much in favor of ethanol as well as wind and solar. I also think it is very prudent to develop a next generation of safe nuclear power. but I would not go to the extent of having any kind of massive, multi-trillion dollar effort and I wouldn't centralize power in the Environmental Protection Agency. And I think it's very important to recognize that you really have two groups. You have the majority of scientists with the National Academy of Science saying it exists, and a small but determined minority saying it doesn't exist. And science isn't about votes. Science is about what-- what are the facts. And I think frankly, a lot of the facts are still out. But as a conservative, you oughta be interested in caution. And so I would be cautious about automatically assuming that nothing is going on.

JAKE TAPPER: Alex via Yahoo asks-- (THROAT CLEAR) excuse me, "I was recently let go and will have to pay for my own health insurance, which is incredibly expensive. How would your plan help people like me who are facing $500 a month for insurance while searching for a job?"

NEWT GINGRICH: Well I-- I would say first of all that we wanna have much less expensive health insurance available. We'd like to have-- I'd like to have association plans-- that he could join an association of people to buy in group. I also think you oughta be able to buy a catastrophic plan, so that you have a very low cost coverage, much less than $500, but it's not first-dollar coverage.

And-- and I think people have to look at what age they are and what risk they run. But you can develop much less expensive, you look at what Governor Mitch Daniel did, for example, in Indiana. He developed much less expensive-- catastrophic insurance in exactly that kind of circumstance.

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