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Special comment: Newt and freedom of speech

Tonight on "Countdown," Keith Olbermann delivers a special comment about Newt Gringrich and the First Amendment.
/ Source: Countdown

At a First Amendment event in New Hampshire this week, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich told his audience it is time to look into a new level of "supervision" in regards to those who seek to harm America.

"This is a serious long term war," he said, "and it will inevitably lead us to want to know what is said in every suspect place in the country."

Keith Olbermann addresses Gingrich's remarks tonight in a special comment.

You can read an excerpt below.

This was the annual Loeb First Amendment Dinner in Manchester, New Hampshire—a public cherishing of Freedom of Speech—in the state with the two-fisted motto “Live Free Or Die.”

And the arsonist at the microphone, the former Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich, was insisting that we must attach an “on-off button” to Free Speech.

He offered the time-tested excuse trotted out by our demagogues, since even before the Republic was founded: widespread death, of Americans, in America, possibly at the hands of Americans.

But updated, now, to include terrorists using the internet for recruitment... end result “losing a city.”

The Colonial English defended their repression with words like these.

And so did the slave States.

And so did the policemen who shot strikers.

And so did Lindbergh’s America-First crowd.

And so did those who interned Japanese-Americans.

And so did those behind the Red Scare.

And so did Nixon’s plumbers.

The genuine proportion of the threat is always irrelevant.

The fear the threat is exploited to create becomes the only reality.

Tune in to MSNBC at 8 p.m. ET to see Olbermann's full comment.