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Three Top Controversies Of Newt Gingrich's Speakerhood

Newt Gingrich's rise has put his controversial tenure as speaker back in the headlines. Here are three highlights from that past.

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This 1990 NY Times article is related to the controversial GOPAC memo. The memo, which was distributed by called "Language: A Key Mechanism of Control," featured controversial words candidates should use when comparing themselves to their opponents. These included words like traitors, sick, pathetic, self-serving and shame.

This letter from lobbyist Rick Berman promised a a $25,000 donation to Kennesaw State College for Gingrich's class, called "Renewing American Civilization."

The donation was under the condition that Gingrich would teach in the class values supported by Berman's business-backed organization, the Employment Policies Institute Foundation.

The letter from Berman also thanks Gingrich for his help in enabling Berman to testify at a Congressional hearing.

The correspondence was a focus of ethics charges against Gingrich.

The front cover of the Mariette Daily Journal when Gingrich was reprimanded on ethics charges and given a $300,000 fine. The ethics charges related to Gingrich's college course, "Renewing American Civilization," which was accused of promoting Gingrich's political goals and views in violation of the organizations’ tax-exempt status. Charges also related to the mismanagement of GOPAC during Gingrich's tenure as Chairman. Gingrich was accused of receiving inappropriate gifts and improper contributions.

Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Andrew Kaczynski at

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