Newt Gingrich: We Can’t Allow ‘Hysteria’ To Destroy People By Those Who Solely Want to ‘Get Even’
In the midst of the tidal wave of sexual harassment allegations, Newt Gingrich warned that innocent individuals could be swept up and have their lives destroyed.
Sean Hannity invoked certain cases like the Duke lacrosse team where the media got it “so wrong” and that there’s no “clear line” like there was with the photograph of Al Franken.
There’s a risk here that one allegation can destroy somebody and it’s not true or it’s far more nuanced than anybody wants to know,” Hannity told the former speaker.
Gingrich responded by acknowledging that he was “going out on a limb.”
“We’ve had a very long tradition in America going all the way back to the Boston Massacre in the 1770s that you were innocent until proven guilty and that you have the right of a presumption of innocence,” Gingrich said. “And I think, again, if you have somebody like Harvey Weinstein, who now has so many names out there that it’s almost inconceivable that he isn’t guilty of a substantial amount of stuff.
He went on to express skepticism to those who “remembered that 12 years ago they ‘felt bad.'”
“How do you prove what really happened and how do you prove whether or not somebody really meant to do something negative?” Gingrich asked. “And I do think we’ve got to take a deep breath here and not have the hysteria allow us to start destroying people randomly so that you then set up targets were anybody who wants to can get even by suddenly remembering something that happened 20 years ago.”
Hannity responded by saying that the “politics” can complicate these allegations along with the timing in which the allegations are made. Gingrich agreed but added that the “liberal news media” are also at fault for trying to “make a point.”
“Part of it is I think that you got to look at some of these things and ask yourself, ‘Why are they coming up now? What’s the evidence? And again, was it a situation that in fact was basically innocent, but is now subject to misinterpretation?’ When I see people who weren’t particularly offended 10 or 12 or 15 years ago but suddenly there is now this hysteria and so they decide they are going to join the lynch mob and they got their story to tell. I just think we as a country ought to take a deep breath and think carefully.”
He added that “all of us want to protect the innocents,” but that the innocent “may be on both sides of that equation,” and it isn’t clear that “a charge is the same as a conviction.”
Watch the clip above, via Fox News.
[image via screengrab]
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