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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

How Bill Young helped create Newt Gingrich



youngingrich.jpgBack in 1989, Newt Gingrich was a tough-talking congressman from Georgia eager for power. But he wasn't popular enough to run away with the race for minority whip. In a tight contest with Ed Madigan of Illinois, Gingrich turned to Florida Rep. C.W. Bill Young.

"He came to me and said, 'I really need to get these three last votes, help me,' " recounted Young.

Young got him the votes.

On election night in 1994, the future speaker called Young and thanked him. 'He said, 'We're going to win this thing tonight. The next day, he said, 'What job do you want? I said, 'Newt, what I'd really want to do is defense.'"

That's how Young became chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense.

Photo from Flickr.

[Last modified: Friday, December 2, 2011 4:16pm]


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