Struggling to shake off a politically damaging interview on Meet The Press, Newt Gingrich took the ever-popular tack yesterday of blaming the media and its “gotcha” questions. But host David Gregory isn’t having it, pushing back today against Newt’s claim that he was ambushed.
“There was no set-up,” Gregory told the Huffington Post’s Michael Calderone, adding that Newt “knew what he was doing” and “knows what he’s doing now.”Sunday marked Gingrich’s 35th appearance on Meet The Press, but he said in a conference call with conservative bloggers yesterday that he was unprepared for Gregory’s questions on Paul Ryan’s budget and Gingrich’s support for an individual mandate.
“I didn’t go in there quite hostile enough, because it didn’t occur to me going in that you’d have a series of setups,” Gingrich said. “This wasn’t me randomly saying things. These were very deliberate efforts to pick fights.”
According to Gregory, he isn’t letting the presidential candidate’s words get him down.
“I don’t take what he’s doing all that personally,” Gregory said. “I understand that he must feel that he made a mistake in answering the way he did. He’s got to do whatever he’s got to do.”
Paul Ryan will be on Meet The Press on Sunday, where Gingrich’s condemnation of his budget is likely to be Topic A.