Newt Gingrich Statement on Passing of President Nelson Mandela
December 5, 2013
President Nelson Mandela was one of the greatest leaders of our lifetime.
He emerged from 27 long years in prison with a wisdom, a compassion, and a commitment to helping other people that was astonishing. His life was a triumph of the human spirit.
When he visited the Congress I was deeply impressed with the charisma and the calmness with which he could dominate a room. It was as if the rest of us grew smaller and he grew stronger and more dominant the longer the meeting continued.
His thoughtful, disciplined, but friendly and warm personality made him a leader who could define the right policies and the right behaviors.
Nelson Mandela was truly the father of an integrated, democratic South Africa.
He will be an inspiration for generations to come and an historic leader worth studying for as long as people want to learn about greatness in serving others.
Callista and I extend our condolences and our prayers to the Mandela family and to the people of South Africa.