Former House speaker Gingrich last month described some child labor laws as "stupid" and argued that low-income children would learn critical values by working at a younger age. He then outlined his proposal to replace "unionized janitors" with a "master janitor" and several students.
"It is tragic what we do in the poorest neighborhoods, entrapping children in child laws which are truly stupid," Gingrich said during a speech at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. "Saying to people you shouldn't go to work before you're 14, 16. You're totally poor, you're in a school that's failing with a teacher that's failing."
From the same article, Newt's position on child labor in 1996:
But in a 1996 ad titled "Cookie," Gingrich slammed his then-congressional opponent, Michael Coles, former CEO of Great American Cookie Co., as an "unscrupulous businessman" partly because of a 1993 violation of child labor laws and accused him of using children "for hazardous labor," according to a transcript of the ad in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.