Marianne Gingrich: Newt Gingrich’s second wife says he wanted an open marriage
Former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich has been
moving ahead in the GOP polls recently, gaining ground as the “conservative alternative” to Mitt Romney. However, his campaign may have hit an insurmountable obstacle: tonight, ABC News’ Nightline will feature an interview with Gingrich’s second wife, Marianne, in which she alleges that he attempted to convince her to enter an open marriage.
In the interview Marianne states that in the late 1990s, Gingrich asked her to allow him to continue the affair he was then having with congressional aide Callista Bisek — who is now his third wife.
“He was asking to have an open marriage and I refused,” Marianne said.
This is not the first time that Marianne has spoken out about the marital problems the couple experienced during their 18-year union, but the timing and platform on which she is discussing them now threaten to derail the Gingrich campaign.
Thursday in Beaufort, South Carolina, Gingrich was asked by a voter about his character to which Gingrich responded, “I have been very open about the mistakes I’ve made. I am 68 years old. I am a grandfather.”
Texas Governor Rick Perry, who recently suspended his campaign, is endorsing Gingrich and said, “Newt is not perfect but who among us is?”
In an interview on NBC‘s Today show Thursday morning, Gingrich declined to comment saying, “I’m
not going to say anything negative about Marianne, I realize
that some of the elite media would like to do almost anything other
than cover [President Obama's] failures, but the fact is … we have a
lot we can talk about today about real problems.”