Speaking in an ornate medieval hall for London lawyers, U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich on Friday laid out a conservative agenda for the new century that calls for strong U.S. leadership abroad based on sweeping reforms at home.
“The United States must lead,” Gingrich said. “We Americans have to accept it and … behave accordingly.
“We must learn to lead better. That means we have to listen better … lead a partnership, not be a bully, not be a dictator.”
Gingrich spoke to about 200 people at the end of a three-day policy and pleasure trip to London that some have interpreted as a signal of his White House ambitions for the year 2000.
“Leadership is not based on people liking you but on economic and technological capability,” he said at a luncheon sponsored by the Institute of U.S. Studies at the University of London.
On the domestic front, he said: “My goal for the United States is very simple. We should have a conscious strategy of producing the highest value-added products, with the greatest productivity, to ensure that our citizens have the best take-home-pay and the greatest range in the choice of life.
“It means in the U.S., we have to have litigation reform, education reform, regulation reform and taxation reform.”
Gingrich praised Anglo-American cultural, political and military links as a bulwark against dictatorships.
‘Saddam Hussein is real,” he said. “There is a real danger of a country outside of our way of thought acquiring weapons of mass destruction. These are real threats. They are as real as ‘Mein Kampf’ in 1935.”