Thrice-married Newt Gingrich: Brave Champion of Proposition 8

Newt dumped cancer-stricken 1st wife. When his pastor criticized him for not supporting his two kids, he left the church. Newt dumped 2nd wife after cheating on her with the Congressional aide who is now his 3rd wife.  The scandal sidelined Newt in 2008.

Until now.

My fellow Americans, meet a true defender of traditional marriage:

With Newt's YouTube plug for Prop 8 now airing over at the Yes on 8 blogs, maybe today's a good day to revisit Jeralyn's TalkLeft post from 2002 on the subject of Republican Sexual Hypocrisy.

Jeralyn supplies three sources (one for each marriage, I suppose):


In 1981, Newt dumped his first wife, Jackie Battley, for Marianne, wife number 2, while Jackie was in the hospital undergoing cancer treatment. Marianne and Newt divorced in December, 1999 after Marianne found out about Newt's long-running affair with Callista Bisek, his one-time congressional aide. Gingrich asked Marianne for the divorce by phoning her on Mother's Day, 1999. — New York Post, July 18, 2000


Gingrich's misbehavior goes back years. Fidelity was apparently never his strong point. After marrying his high school math teacher, Jacqueline Battley, even he admits: ''In the 1970s, things happened.''

As a congressional candidate, he conducted an affair in 1977, a year before enlisting Jackie to write a letter attacking his opponent for planning to leave her family in the district: ''When elected, Newt will keep his family together,'' declared one unintentionally hilarious campaign ad. Gingrich ended his 19-year marriage shortly after his victory.

He famously visited Jackie in the hospital where she was recovering from surgery for uterine cancer to discuss details of the divorce. He later resisted paying alimony and child support for his two daughters, causing a church to take up a collection. For all of his talk of religious faith and the importance of God, Gingrich left his congregation over the pastor's criticism of his divorce.

Soon thereafter, Gingrich married Marianne Ginther, whom he had previously met at a political fund-raiser. He called her ''the woman I love'' and ''my best friend and closest adviser'' in his first speech as House speaker, in January 1995… Yet, his relationship with Bisek, a House employee, apparently extended back to 1993 while he was talking of reforming the corrupt welfare state and promoting society's moral regeneration. Rumors of his relationship with Bisek, more than 20 years his junior, did not stop him from writing his political testament, in which he criticized sex outside of marriage, promoted traditional family life and opined that ''any male who doesn't support his children is a bum.''

In May 1999, however, Gingrich called Marianne at her mother's home. After wishing the 84-year-old matriarch happy birthday, he told Marianne that he wanted a divorce. — Copely News Service, August 21, 2000


Gingrich's most recent ex-wife says he ditched her eight months after finding out she had multiple sclerosis. Marianne Gingrich, 48, shopping a book proposal “both personal and political” about how women are treated in D.C., says the ex-speaker of the House told her on Mother's Day 1999 that he wanted a divorce, after learning she had a neurological condition that could lead to MS. In 1981, the former congressman told his other ex-wife, Jackie Battley, that he was dumping her, after she had been hospitalized with cancer. Newt, 57, will wed ex-congressional aide Callista Bisek, 34 — with whom he had an affair while still married to Marianne — on Aug. 18. — Akron Beacon Journal, July 25, 2000

In all fairness to the Yes on 8 camp, Newt was their Plan B.

They had been hoping to snag Rudy Giuliani.

That's all for now. I'm off to find Newt's sponsors:

If “Stand for Marriage California” is, in fact, a Proposition 8 Committee, why isn't it registered with the Secretary of State's office?

As far as I can tell, “Stand for Marriage, Inc.” doesn't even exist.

Running a WHOIS lookup for provides this info:

Registrant Name: John Stemberger
Registrant Organization: Florida Family Policy Council
Registrant Email: [email protected]
Admin Email: [email protected]

Which gets us to the Florida Family Policy Council website, where we learn:

“Florida Family Policy Council is associated with Focus on the Family.”

“We will endeavor in all that we do to be people of good faith and good will in making the case for Biblical family values in the public square.”

I trust that your Biblical family values require that you provide complete and honest reporting of all contributions to the Proposition 8 campaign.

I'm still working on that “Stand for Marriage, Inc.” entity … any ideas?

Chino Blanco

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