Home state: Georgia (Born in Pennsylvania, lives in Virginia)
Economic Platform: The former House speaker’s pro-business “Jobs and Prosperity Plan” aims to trigger growth by slashing taxes across the board – including eliminating the capital gains tax and reducing corporate income tax to 12.5 percent from its current marginal rate of 35 percent. Gingrich says that by lowering the tax rate, the U.S. will generate more revenue.
“(Companies have) trillions of dollars overseas that they will not bring home to this country because of tax rate,” he says on his website.
Gingrich also wants to repeal laws and financial regulations that he believes impede job creation, including dismantling the Environmental Protection Agency and replacing it with a new Environmental Solutions Agency. He also wants to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act, which overhauled and tightened regulation of the financial industry.
All jobs are good jobs, says Gingrich’s website, and he blames the “liberal elites in colleges, news media and government” for creating a “snob effect” and “downplaying the need for manufacturing and other less-intellectual jobs.”
Defense: Gingrich believes that American safety is the most important duty of government. He says we must identify threats to America and provide the appropriate level of funding to combat them. During the October GOP debate in Las Vegas, Gingrich sidestepped a question about a proposal to cut the defense budget by $500 billion, saying, “I’m a hawk, but I’m a cheap hawk.”
Education: Although Gingrich’s website does not directly address education, he discussed his views on the issue during the GOP debate in Florida in October. Gingrich favors little federal involvement in education and believes America should “get rid of virtually all of [the Department of Education’s] regulations.” Instead, Gingrich wants to see a “profound reform of education at the state level.”
Health care: On his website, Gingrich proposes his “Patient Power” plan that aims to give the public more options. First and foremost, Gingrich wants to repeal President Obama’s health care legislation, which he calls a job killer. He supports reforming the current Medicaid system and allowing seniors to opt out of Medicare. He thinks Americans should be able to purchase insurance across state lines, believing the increased competition will encourage better care.
Social Security: Gingrich favors a system where young people can opt to use a personal account, controlled by the individual instead of the government. “Why shouldn’t you have the right?” Gingrich asked at a GOP debate. The elderly, he said, could still use the current system.
National Debt: Though he does not outline specific policies on his website, Gingrich signed the “Strong America Now” pledge, which aims to reduce the national debt primarily by eliminating wasteful spending.
Taxes: Gingrich wants to continue Bush-era tax cuts, saying that they are good for job creation. He was the first candidate to reveal his jobs plan, was among the first to propose an optional flat tax of 15 percent, with a $12,000 personal deduction to ensure “that this new system does not unfairly target the poor.”