Newt Gingrich, ‘Cultural Teacher,’ Is Also Campaigning to Sell Books

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$$$Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Back when most of Newt Gingrich's staff abandoned him, many giggled at his doomed campaign for the GOP nomination. But he kept going, because, no matter what happened, Gingrich would likely have the last laugh as a businessman, continuing to sell his book on tour and upping his rate as a speaker and commentator, just like Herman Cain. Now Gingrich must be practically howling: Not only does he lead in the polls, but he's still finding time to sell books, even as a serious candidate. His wife Callista, also an author, is enjoying an increased demand for her work too.

Today, Gingrich has just one public event — at a Washington bookstore — while tomorrow he'll hold a book-signing before the Republican debate. "I am a cultural teacher, with a political campaign to change a government. And that’s how I see myself," Gingrich told the New York Times. His book, A Nation Like No Other, has sold 15,000 copies at $25 a piece, all of which goes not to the campaign, as some buyers believe, but to Gingrich himself via Gingrich Productions, the company Callista runs as president. Her children's book ($15) is also available at campaign stops. "I believe in free enterprise, and I think it’s O.K. to make money," Gingrich said.

During Black History Month in February, Gingrich will focus on selling one of his novels instead of his sixteen nonfiction titles. The Battle of the Crater tells the story of black Union troops in the Civil War. "It has a lot of different signals to a lot of different people that there are things in American history worthy knowing," Gingrich explained. "You have to see me as a teacher." And, in some ways, a marketing genius.