House Speaker Newt Gingrich scrambled to defend his wife's job as a consultant for a firm recruiting business for an Israeli free-trade zone. Turns out Gingrich has been promoting the business park to government officials in Israel. The Speaker maintains there is no conflict of interest and complained about being "smeared" by "tax and spend liberals" who detest his conservative ideas. "Why are wives being brought into this?" he asked. "It seems to me, since no taxpayer funds are involved, and it's an entirely private business, she ought to be let alone."