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Newt Gingrich supporters brush off his baggage, admire his intelligence

By Shira Schoenberg and Tracy Jan
Globe Correspondent And Globe Staff / December 16, 2011
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Newt Gingrich recently rocketed to the lead in Iowa, which holds the first caucuses Jan. 3, and is in second place in New Hampshire, which votes Jan. 10. His Republican rivals have attacked him for changing positions on climate change, a health insurance mandate, and a Republican plan to convert Medicare into a voucher program. A debate moderator asked fellow Republicans to weigh in on Gingrich’s infidelity. Yet Gingrich supporters said they admired his intelligence, knowledge of Washington, and commitment to a conservative agenda. While most knew of his personal and political history, they largely brushed it off as irrelevant.

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