Now that Newt Gingrich is the frontrunner du jour in the Republican presidential contest, the story about his divorce from his first wife is, again, fodder for his opponents.
This tweet this morning from Roger Ebert reopens the discussion.
At least Ebert didn’t say Gingrich’s wife was “dying,” which several retellings of the story have.
Still, it’s one of the factoids of the campaign season mostly stripped of context .
What’s the full story? FactCheck.org has just posted it:
So, what do we know for certain? One, Battley and Gingrich were already separated and in the process of getting a divorce when he visited her in the hospital. And two, Battley wasn’t dying of cancer. Also, the “yellow pad” and handwritten list of divorce terms mentioned in the original Mother Jones story aren’t mentioned in the accounts given by Battley, Gingrich or Cushman, who all were present.
But even by Gingrich’s account it was an unpleasant conversation at a time when his wife was hospitalized. Beyond that, the details of what was actually discussed remain cloudy, to say the least.