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Jonathan Alter explains how Newt Gingrich has talked his way to the cusp of the GOP nomination in his new column, “Gingrich Uses Fog Of Words To Cloud Our Memory:”

Newt Gingrich is back in contention for the Republican presidential nomination partly because he understands the power of words, the pervasiveness of amnesia, and the dark art of making them work together.

It’s still hard to imagine Gingrich as president. He’s likely to blow himself up before next November. But the scary thing for Democrats is that Gingrich grasps these subtextual forces better than they do. It makes him a less predictable and possibly more dangerous opponent than Mitt Romney in the general election.

Gingrich helped Republicans seize control of the House of Representatives in 1994 with the help of “key words” tested by pollster Frank Luntz, who designed the “Contract with America.”

In 1990, Gingrich’s political action committee, GOPAC, put out an audio cassette with advice for Republican candidates. Gingrich followed up with a famous memo to Republicans called “Language: A Key Mechanism of Control”:

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Two organizations tracking anti-immigrant advertising say they’ve documented more than 700 such ads leading into the 2022 midterms, including attacks against the Biden administration over a so-called “border crisis” and content designed to undermine a vastly popular pathway to citizenship for the nation’s undocumented communities.

The former is particularly shameless considering two of the previous administration’s worst policies largely shutting down the U.S. asylum system, Remain in Mexico and the debunked Title 42 public health order, are still in effect today. But that hasn’t stopped Republicans from lying. And as we get closer to Election Day, we already know it’ll only get worse.

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