Overheard on CNN.com: Do Gingrich's divorces, Paul's newsletters matter?
Readers are debating how Newt Gingrich's past impacts his current GOP candidacy.
December 26th, 2011
07:29 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Do Gingrich's divorces, Paul's newsletters matter?

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

The GOP candidacy saga continues in the days leading up to the Iowa caucuses on January 3. Current conversation is centering on two men: Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul. Readers have been talking up a storm about recent CNN stories about both candidates.

Newly recovered court files cast doubt on Gingrich version of first divorce

Newt Gingrich claims his first wife wanted their divorce in 1980, but court documents obtained by CNN appear to show something different. Readers debated the importance of divorce in the presidency, with a large percentage of readers saying Gingrich's baggage makes him difficult to elect.

bzscorpio: "Even if Newt wasn't lying about his first wife wanting the divorce, the real issue here is that the man who wants to appeal to 'family values' voters has had two marriages end because of his infidelity. The guy is just a total scumbag."

There were also a lot of readers who thought commenters were being too judgmental of Gingrich.

cosaslo: "I must say, if you haven't been through one (divorce) you should keep your traps shut and your ideas to yourself. For those of us who have, what I can say is Newt, glad to see ya. The stuff they are throwing at you now ain't nothin'."

The comparisons to former President Bill Clinton did come.

obamamentor: "Let me get this right: Newt was trying to impeach a president for doing what Newt was doing also at the same time."

boblawbla: "I don't recall reading any stories of Newt Gingrich getting (oral sex) from an intern in the Oval Office and then lying about it. So much for that character thing everyone seems to be focused on."

Some said they were fed up with politicians on both sides.

StoneTools: "I can't, for the life of me, understand how anyone can run for political office or re-election with the baggage that these politicians carry with them. This includes Democrats, Republicans, independents, etc. The list of them is so long, it's not worth repeating here."

calmncool: "They are counting of a lot of really stupid voters."

What do you think? Can Gingrich become the GOP nominee? Share your thoughts on video via CNN iReport and post a comment below.

But let's not forget about Ron Paul, who also was the subject of thousands of comments on CNN.com. Conservative commentator David Frum wrote an opinion piece examining the roots of the candidate's devoted following, taking a look back at some controversial newsletters published under Paul's name back in the 1990s.

Ron Paul: Codger, crank or more?

Frum asserts that Paul "was ready to exploit the even greater racism and extremism of others for financial gain," and our commenters had plenty to say in response. Many were outraged:

Tempesttt: "If gullible people didn't take this tripe seriously, I'd be laughing about it. It's funny that the best they can do to tarnish Ron Paul's name is pull up some old newsletter from almost 20 years ago that he didn't even write nor endorse. The more the media hates on Ron Paul, the more I am convinced that he's the man I want to be the next president of the United States."

Readers debated the significance of newsletters written so long ago.

timjayko: "Ron Paul did not write those newsletters, nor does he agree with them. Take a look at Newt Gingrich's track record. You could write a whole friggin' book on his slimy history. Or Romney's flip-flopping policies. Could make a waffle breakfast for hundreds with this changes on political stances throughout the years."

nsinex: "If he didnt write them, he let people he trusted write them. If people he trusted had those views, he couldn't have thought their views were too far off."

PhillyEric: "What none of the Ron Paul defenders is willing to address is how his 'I didn't know the contents of the newsletters' defense is actually helpful. If you knew that there were newsletters being published with your name on them, wouldn't you verify that the contents reflected your views? Or wouldn't you at least take the time to find out who was writing them and what they stood for? All this defense argues is that he is so money-hungry or unprincipled that he didn't care what his name was being used for. I certainly haven't seen him offer to return the millions of dollars in profits."

But most simply disagreed with Frum.

narniaisboss: "I'm sorry, but whether or not you like Ron Paul, you have to admit that this is complete nonsense."

What do you think about these stories? Share your opinion in the comments area below and in the latest stories on CNN.com. Or sound off on video via CNN iReport.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (85 Responses)
  1. Lee Fong Lumberyard (R-Ohio) "Free AK-47s'"

    U no merica good place. No sush ting as perfic presdent. Eash one scewyer den next. No matter wish side of fense u on. Obama will whine in 2012. Hoorah!! 😉

    December 26, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |
  2. celebs4truth.com

    Help this pro-Ron Paul, Denver Conspiracy Examiner article go viral! Spread it all over the internet and social networks!: "Support the troops by supporting Ron Paul" http://www.examiner.com/conspiracy-in-denver/support-the-troops-by-supporting-ron-paul

    December 26, 2011 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
  3. banasy©

    Didn't you hear?
    Trump "divorced" himself from the Republican Party.

    December 26, 2011 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
  4. chrissy

    lol you go bigwillie, Joey and banasy!! Frankly unless im married to THE man i could give a rats a-s-s if he is unfaithful in marriage, its between his wife, children and GOD, and no one elses business! But since the GOP cant get a good candidate its null

    December 26, 2011 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. banasy©

    Hi, chrissy!
    How goes the good fight?

    December 26, 2011 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
  6. ¿TTUИFFUЯ ( ½ ELF slayer & ½ BUGBEAR KILLER )

    maybe clinton can run wih bill as vice>?

    December 26, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
  7. chrissy

    lmfao you KNOW i won! And hows ur night goin?

    December 26, 2011 at 9:43 pm | Report abuse |
  8. chrissy

    @ ruffie, one can only dream eh? and cute fong lmao!

    December 26, 2011 at 9:45 pm | Report abuse |
  9. chrissy

    well i see the brats are still up, do you think they have a brain between them? obviously one wouldnt broadcast to the whole free nation that they crapped their pants so if you children want to be convincing you better work harder! 🙂

    December 26, 2011 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |
  10. ¿TTUИFFUЯ ( ½ ELF slayer & ½ BUGBEAR KILLER )

    @ CNN's Nicole Saidi..
    cant you block the troll and block his ip address>?

    December 26, 2011 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
  11. s kel

    I was saying earlier I saw Newt at midnight mass at the shrine ACTUALLY TALKING TO MY PARENTS LIKE OLD FRIENDS!EWWWWWW lOL but I do remember they all did a church trip together.......so oh well

    December 26, 2011 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  12. s kel

    And Bansay Happy (early) New yr to you too.

    December 26, 2011 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
  13. s kel

    lol Chrissy.

    December 26, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  14. s kel

    Chrissy better that than seeing Newt Ginwich talkiing ang laughing with your parents. Lol

    December 26, 2011 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  15. genomega

    As opposed to Obama's Marxists past?

    December 26, 2011 at 10:05 pm | Report abuse |
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