The Republican Debate Audience Hits A New Low By Cheering Child Labor

Not only did the South Carolina Republican debate audience cheer child labor, they were orgasmic over the idea of using child labor to destroy unions.

Here’s the video:

Here is what Gingrich said that got him a standing ovation at tonight’s Fox News Republican debate in South Carolina, “What I tried to say, and I think it’s fascinating because Joe Klein reminded me that this started with an article that he wrote twenty years ago. New York City pays their janitors an absurd amount of money because of the union. You could take one janitor and hire thirty some kids to work in the school for the price of one janitor, and those thirty kids would be a lot less likely to drop out. They would actually have money in their pocket. They’d learn to show up for work. They could do light janitorial duty. They could work in cafeteria. They could work in the front office. They could work in the library. They’d be getting money which is a good thing if you are poor. Only the elites despise earning money.”

The Republican debate audience not only cheered the use of poor and minority students as child labor, but they were orgasmic over the idea of using kids in order to destroy unions. What Gingrich was really saying is that poor and minority kids aren’t entitled to an education. Gingrich’s plan would sentence children to cleaning up after and serving wealthier and in all probability whiter children. Newt Gingrich wants to put racial and financial barriers back into our public school system.

While these minority and poor kids are mopping the floors and serving food, the one thing they aren’t doing is getting an education. It is not surprising that the message that education is for whites and that minorities should serve them would play so well in South Carolina. The state has the ninth highest level of people in poverty, and high dropout rate. Only 55% of the state’s students graduate high school. Just 45% of South Carolina’s African American students and 39% of the Hispanic students graduate high school.

Given these numbers, who do you think would make up most of the workers in Newt Gingrich’s kiddie labor force?

The idea is to take poor white, African American, and Hispanic children and use them to push the cost of labor down. Gingrich’s plan would make economic advancement impossible for poor and minority kids. It would also create more competition that would push adult wages down. Gingrich wants to return America to level of economic inequality that was present in this country during the early 20th Century.

Gingrich’s dream of legalized child labor is morally reprehensible, and the Republican debate audience loved it. Their standing ovation spoke volumes about the kind of America they want to see, and specifically the color they want back in power.

61 Replies to “The Republican Debate Audience Hits A New Low By Cheering Child Labor”

  1. I can only surmise that they pull psychotics off the street to attend these GOP debates
    and tell them that their families will be made into liberals and food withheld if they don’t makes complete and
    utter asses of themselves.

    The GOP is digging holes so deep that they will never be able to crawl out.

  2. I watched part of the debate until I got disgusted and switched channels. Another disturbing thing was when the audience booed Juan Williams, the only African American on the questioning panel, twice. Gingrich did just super with that crowd.

  3. How the Devil do they come up with the fact that so many Americans are on food stamps now during the Obama presidency, as a direct result of actions taken during previous a previous President’s term? No one person is directly responsible. However, the fact remains that so many things could be better if the two parties would stop this incessant refusal to compromise and work together for the country rather than “Wagging the Dog” as it were.

  4. Your daughter wasn’t ina position to be looked down on by her fellow classmen who are well off or better off.

    Grinch, you are an idiot.

    Obviously you have no clue what income it takes to live in NYC. And this is the type of people that would vote conservative. Some of us see them every day in print or in life. Thank bologna most of the nation is sane

  5. OK, hire 30 kids at minimum wage $7.50 an hour. Thats $225 an hour. I should have been a janitor then I could have made the big bucks. But with all these 13 year olds in the country making those wages and getting taxed maybe I will be able to still collect social security. And if we replace all the janitors in the Country with 30 kids each it should restore the economy. Way to Go Newt.

  6. So, we know that the established parties can’t or won’t work together, or even care about the country as a whole, soooo, why don’t we stop electing them? Vote independent, send a real message to these idiots. Not every race will have an independent candidate, so go with Richard Pryors idea in “Brewster’s millions” and write in “None of the above”. If you live in North Alabama, write in Jonathan Wessner for district 5. If we don’t vote for the parties, then they can’t keep screwing things up

  7. This is absolutely sick.
    He struts like a banny rooster wile in front of his republican crowds; he wouldn’t get this standing ovation addressing any other audience.

  8. You missed one small point. The Republicans also want to do away with the minimum wage. That would make up the difference in your math.

  9. I remember when people worked their way through college, when it could still be afforded that way, and it wasn’t easy. Expecting kids to work their way through elementary school is a bridge too far. There is something more, though. Colleges charge tuition, which everyone but those on full scholarships paid, and it was public knowledge what the sum was. Public elementary and high schools, though, have no express tuition. So who decides, and how, which kids are “entitled” to a free public education, and which ones must “earn” it? Any such criterion amounts to regressive taxation, a tax which is extracted by corveé labor from already disadvantaged children in direct proportion to their disandvantage.

  10. A real work study jobs program that puts high school students in career jobs to get job experience, meet mentors and earn money AFTER SCHOOL HOURS would meet Gingrich’s goals without humiliation. Any chance the GOP would provide funding for the administration of any such program?

  11. Well, in fact, this whole scheme teaches the value of feudal hierarchy and serfdom to American children, the very thing our current Republicans want to inculcate into our society.

  12. This is nothing but an attempt to humiliate the poor and minorities and to pander to peoples’ deep-seated prejudices. How can anyone seriously look at this man and think he’s Presidential material? How can anyone seriously look at this man and think he’s human?

  13. I agree. And also, I’m absolutely disgusted that fetuses are allowed to completely mooch off food funded by my tax dollars. They should stop the horrible habit of sucking their thumbs and start doing something to help the economy. Instead of having union mine workers costing us huge amounts of money, fetuses could do the digging, since they naturally want to do something with their hands. Also, they could easily do the job without sunlight. At night, they could go back into the safety of the womb. They would know the value of a buck, even before they know the value of food. Hell, I knew one kid who became a miner foreman at age 5. That’s the entrepreneur spirit missing in this country. (Cue wild Morton Downey, Jr. audience applause)

  14. Are there no prisons, are there no workhouses? Not content with wanting to drag us back to the Fifties, now Republicans want to drag us back to the time of Dickens.

  15. I call them the Jonestown Party for a reason. They are every bit as delusional and paranoid as the folks down in Guyana were. And since these Jonestowners haven’t been isolated far away, they are a great deal more dangerous to us all.

  16. I have worked for years as a social worker, and I can tell the difference between the needy and the greedy. Mr. Gingrich keeps saying that President Obama is the food stamp president, and that he has put more people on food stamps than any other president.

    Firstly, a person or family is not put on, an individual or family must apply; it’s not a mandate. Secondly, food stamps are distributed monthly, people need to, or should eat daily. People should not go hungry in this country, but they do.

    And guess what, Mr. Gingrich, most of the people on food stamps are employed, or underemployed. They just don’t make enough to meet their financial obligations (rent, utilities, etc.) and to feed their families.

    Does Mr. Gingrich believe that people who get assistance to feed themselves and their families once a month are living high on the hog, and are some how proud to be in the situation that they are currently in?

    If this is the case, he’s more out of touch than I thought. I would love for Mr. Gingrich to go to any supermarket, or Wal-Mart and see how people have to stretch their food stamps, so they can try to make it to the second to three week of any given month.

    I would like him to see and hear the exchanges of parents telling their children that they don’t have enough to buy a particular brand of cereal, or ice cream, or that they can’t buy it at all.

    We need a real, honest, and compassionate dialogue about poverty in this country. Mr. Gingrich is dismissing the poor and the working poor at every opportunity he gets. Too bad for him, that he forgets that they have the power to vote!

  17. I am ashamed of these Americans who cheer child poverty, jeer at low-income folks on food stamps (I’ve been there and I was grateful to be able to feed my children), and who continue the racist attitudes of the unreconstructed South. Shame on South Carolinians who approve and feed this kind of hate. They are all impoverished in their hearts and minds.

    Newt will say anything to get elected to anything. He’s a big fat blowhard who will never be president. The women of this country will see to that.

  18. I’ve said this after every debate, there shouldn’t be an audience during these debates. What it turns into is every candidate vying for the most applause by saying the most outlandish thing they can come up with.

  19. Wow! A concrete job creation program for the republicans to actual sell!

    As someone else said earlier, not one job has been created by the GOP platform on moral issues…not one…well, maybe the for profit prison industry where all these “fetus” will wind up because they can make more money on the streets selling drugs as “Ginghus-Khan” has pointed out.

  20. Newt Gingrich and the cretins who cheered at his insulting, hateful remarks are completely beneath contempt. The only good thing to come out of his performances is that we know exactly where he stands. He is unabashed in his own contempt for the poor and minorities, which makes me happy that he will never be president.

  21. One person may not be responsible (although Bush does deserve the brunt of the blame), but one PARTY is clearly at fault here (and only the one party) – those advocating child labor now, the Republicans.

  22. They probably think they’ll establish a sliding scale, based on skin color and parental income. The whiter and the better off, the higher the pay.

  23. You are asking us to throw away our vote. Nice move.

    Probably your next suggestion is to support Ron Paul.

  24. They’re trying to make it the same in college. “If you can’t pay out of pocket for your education, then you don’t belong here!” (I heard that as a quote from a conservative editor of our school’s newspaper one time.) The people who can’t afford it have to mortgage their lives and future (student loans)… and if you’re disabled or don’t fit the accepted stereotype (healthy young kid with mommy and daddy to take care of their needs), the student loans (and Pell grant) don’t pay enough to survive on… forcing some people (including myself) to beg for food.

  25. When you realize that Jim Jones was mainstream Assemblies of God, but was thrown out because he accepted African Americans in his congregation (documented fact)… it’s a scary thought (the Assemblies of God were the proto-dominionists, and spread their cancer to other denominations including the Southern Baptists).

  26. The southern Baptist’s are always ripe for anything that allows them to set in their homes and hate black people while they mutter in their beards. There is a constant run on white sheets down here for people to wear in darkened rooms while they read their Bibles ☚

  27. One thing these South Carolina folks are missing, is that South Carolina is vehemently anti union. Therefore, they wouldn’t be busting any unions. The only thing they’d be doing is putting some grown adult with a family out of a job. These little sound bites that Mr. Newt comes up with are about such trivial things. You think this countrys problems stem from kids not working enough? From unions? From janitors in New York? This is a solution to a problem that didn’t exist before Newt invented it. And this is supposed to be the smart guy!?

  28. Never a banty. I have a bantam Frizzle, who is dainty and dandy and cute. Newt is more in the Foghorn Leghorn category.

  29. Only corporate raiders and robber barons are supposed to make a good living, donchaknow? I wonder what these janitors do make, and why the amount is so offensive to the rich Mr. Grinch.

  30. Teens in high school frequently work part-time jobs, and this does not violate child labor laws in any way shape or form. In a recessed economy such as this where teens have more difficulty finding part-time work, opportunities to earn money are harder to find.

    Janitorial work isn’t reserved only for the poor. It’s a job that people with entry level skills can perform, which are the kinds of skills that high school teens have.

    Washington, DC

  31. Brian, you’re absolutely correct. When I was in school I work part time, and when I was in what I guess you would call middle school, six grade through eigth grade I also worked in the summer occasionally for some of the teachers around their homes with other students. With that said I was also working my dad’s farm and working on a 5000 acre farm. I’m a pretty decent money. Before I was 18 I had a one-year-old car paid off free and clear

    however Newt Gingrich’s idea of this child labor is not one that’s voluntary. He is picking out poor people to work as janitorial people under the eye of much more well-to-do students And opening them to ridicule. his plan includes replacing janitors with these poor students. And he specifically called out poor students.

    there is a difference between what you and I understand is part-time jobs and what Newt Gingrich has in mind for poor children

  32. Newt isn’t talking voluntary, and he isn’t talking teenagers. Think about conscripting nine-year-olds.

  33. The responses of this audience and the audiences at the other debates are proof positive that conservatives are reprehensible scum.

  34. I’m wondering how much influence has been “infused” with in the GOP by the radical fundamentalist evangelical crowd in support of the Quiverfull Movement?

    Once again, this is a movement that advocates not allowing children, especially females, out in the real world; their fearless leader (a guy named Botkin) specifically states that girls are to be insulated from anything outside their home and prepare them only for their duties in life; the kitchen and baby-making.

    The bastards calls the kitchen, “a laboratory”, trying to make it sound cool,exotic and “educational”. The kids are all “home schooled”, yet, the parents “brag” about their how their 9 year old daughters can’t read, but knows how to change diapers and cook all day! They call these girls their little “spiritual warriors” for the family, keepers of the faith; how special.

    Sounds like these little girls are already “janitors” for a small, private, very exclusive christian school with a “cool” laboratory.
    Can’t wait for Newt to trout one of these families up on stage and praise their service to their country.

  35. South Carolina: First in treason, last in quality of life metrics, first in mean-spiritedness.

    Ya know, William T. Sherman should have also ordered the salting of the earth after Columbia was “accidentally” burned to the ground. His hatred of SC was visceral.

  36. Shiva,

    first, I will disclose that I’m no Gingrich fan, but I agree with this particular point.

    Gingrich is talking about reserving certain types of jobs for students so as to give them opportunity. Watch the dialog; Juan Williams never challenges him on child labor. He challenges him on the issue of race and demeaning work. Ginrich answered his question by stating that creating opportunity of any kind is in no way belittling, which is is not. Working on a farm didn’t belittle you just as working as a janitor doesn’t belittle anyone else.

    Gingrich has advocated increasing the number of hours that children could work under child labor laws (not sure how I feel about that). I’ve seen nothing that indicates he’s talking about pre-teen children. If you’ve got a link that shows otherwise, please share it. But the idea that he’s proposing to impress impoverished nine year olds into involuntary janitorial work is simply false. If he said that in front a bunch of family-first, value voters, they’d have beheaded him by now!

    Washington, DC

  37. Gingrich is not looking for opportunity. Air which is operating under the premise that poor black kids have no work ethic as compared to kids the same age who are more affluent. It is very belittling to the poor kids

    there is a vast difference between providing an opportunity for kids to learn how to work, and assuming that poor black kids from certain neighborhoods have less of an idea of how to work them more Affluent kid does.

    which is pure bunk. Gingrich is about 9 miles off the rails on this one. If Gingrich would’ve said I want to give all the kids in school an opportunity to work and make a little money, and we will teach them janitorial skills at their young age no one really would’ve said anything. But when he picked out the poor black students who come from less than affluent neighborhoods he made a huge mistake. Surely you can see the difference.

    And given the audiences and what they have applauded during these debates, Gingrich never would’ve been beheaded, he would’ve been knighted

  38. November 22, 2011By Adalia Woodbury


    Did you hear about Newt Gingrich’s latest great idea in which school children would be janitors, beginning at the age of say 9-years-old.

    According to the New York Times:

    In poverty stricken K-12 districts, Mr. Gingrich said that schools should enlist students as young as 9 to14 to mop hallways and bathrooms, and pay them a wage. Currently child-labor laws and unions keep poor students from bootstrapping their way into middle class, Mr. Gingrich said.”

    His first speech aout this was for 9 year olds working in their schools as janitors. I wonder what Newt was doing at 9? Probably tormenting teachers in his Ralph Lauren clothes before he went home to his maids.

  39. When I was in high school, there was a county wide Joint Vocational School for the last two years of school. They taught building skills, plumbing, auto repair, and beautician and secretarial courses. Those kids got out ready to work. Of course, those are long gone, and now we expect every student to have three years of math, through Algebra II, even though many cannot pass that much math…ever. Here in MI, the state requires 4 years of English, three of science and math, 4 of history, and two years of a foreign language. Doesn’t leave much time for job skills, or even learning to balance a checkbook. We need to go back to those vocational schools: many, many kids benefitted from them.

  40. Shiva, now you’re just putting words in his mouth. He answered the question in a race neutral fashion, and he never attacked anyone’s work ethic. He attacked a lack of opportunity for kids to work.

    I have searched the text you’ve cited, and it comes from Trip Gabriels NYT blog. Gingrich’s quotes do speak to offering janitorial jobs to teens, but as far as pre-teen age’s, that only comes from one of Gabriel’s comments. And furthermore, the blog entry doesn’t even mention race.

    I’m not sure how I feel about this particular idea of Gingrich’s, but I he’s at least trying to think of news ways create opportunity.

    Our founding fathers wrote that a democratic republic society can only succeed under a moral and just people. Inserting fasle claims into a discussion to color it as something it’s not is right. We cannot have productive debates about problem solving with that happening. I hope you’ll think about that before the next time you post.

  41. Unfortunately you didn’t research the Grinches own words

    You still don’t get it, or you refuse to. I am not interested in your lectures, Do not lecture me when you refuse to do your own research. Gingrich wants the POOR to work in the schools, not the affluent. He wants the poor to work because he says the poor do not have good work habits. Even though the parents of the poor work, he throws that aside and only focus’s on the poor kids. His premise is flawed and so is yours.

    “Really poor children in really poor neighborhoods have no habits of working and have nobody around them who works,” the former House speaker told an audience at the headquarters for Nationwide Insurance.

    He then seemed to imply that a young, poor individual’s only likely source of possible income would be from breaking the law.

    If you cant read between the lines its not my fault.

  42. I find it ironic that these are the same cretins howling in horror at the “debt we are leaving the chilllldren” yet have no problem “un-educating” and using children as a labor force (to make silk ties and fancy cell phones that they throw away when the newest model arrives)…

    I found this article on “Think Progress” yesterday…

    “At a recent town hall in Osage, Iowa, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R) responded to a question about the Labor Department’s stricter limits on child labor. Concern was raised about the proposed Department of Labor’s intent to greatly limit child labor on family farms.

    “This farm bill will greatly affect our FFA and 4-H programs,” said Grassley. “Kids won’t be able to help on farms not owned by their parents.

    “It’s interesting that this child labor bill goes against Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity initiative,” said Grassley. “How can kids be active if they are limited by this law?”

    Grassley represents a farm state that both relies on child labor and contributes to the national obesity epidemic through its production of corn products like high-fructose corn syrup. Iowa farmers benefit from billions of dollars in corn subsidies that allow them to put a glut of cheap, unhealthy foods on the market.”…

  43. What I find extremely telling is that NOT ONE of the other candidates had the moral courage to tell Gingrich he is dead wrong. Their deafening silence suggests that (1) they agree with him; (2) being white, they don’t think racism concerns them; or (3) they were too cowardly to stand up to Gingrich for fear of being booed by the audience. Of course, it could be a combination of 2 or all 3 of these reasons. Whatever the reason(s) for their deafening silence, none of them are qualified to be the leader of a country that is increasingly racially and religiously diverse.

  44. I don’t doubt, Anne, that for many, it’s all these reasons, but 3 is pretty compelling. The audiences are made up of all the Brown Shits they can gather together, who, like their historic predecessors, regard both compassion and imagination as mental diseases and consider it their patriotic duty to curb-stomp the carriers out of existence.

  45. The teens you reference often struggle in high school because after school, they go to work. Some of them work late. When are these kids, elementary through high school, supposed to complete their school work? Midnight when they get home? I taught high school for 32 years and I often found those students who worked were more often the students who would either fall asleep in class or at least lay their head on the desk to rest. Students working is not conducive to making the most of high school.

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