Newt Gingrich attacks Mitt Romney in ad, as promised

Published: Thursday, Jan. 5 2012 10:00 a.m. MST

FILE - In this Jan. 3, 2012 file photo, Republican presidential candidate former House Speaker Newt Gingrich speaks in Des Moines, Iowa. The Republicans' identity crisis is producing the most volatile presidential primary season in memory and threatening to dilute the conservative fervor that swept the party to huge wins in 2010. Mitt Romney is the pragmatic, establishment choice, but he has yet to attract more than a quarter of GOP voters _ a sign of a still-unsettled race.

Chris Carlson, File, Associated Press

Enlarge photo»

As he promised earlier this week, Newt Gingrich unveiled a TV commercial critical of Mitt Romney today in New Hampshire. The ad called Romney's economic proposal "timid" and characterized Gingrich's own plan as bold and powerful.

This is the first time Gingrich has attacked Romney by name, according to the New York Times.

The ad, titled "Timid vs. Bold," can be seen here.

The spot will run in both New Hampshire and South Carolina, according to the Huffington Post

The ad quoted a Forbes article published Monday that said Romney's economic plan is "virtually identical to Obama's failed policy." The Gingrich spot goes on to say that "timid won't create jobs and timid certainly won't defeat Barack Obama."

Some anticipated a more aggressive swing at Romney based on Gingrich's comments earlier this week, but the new spot does signal a real change in Gingrich's strategy.

"The ad is not a slashing attack similar to the anti-Gingrich ads run by a 'super PAC' financed by Mr. Romney's supporters," wrote Trip Gabriel for the Times' politics blog The Caucus. "But it goes further than any previous effort by Mr. Gingrich, who has been struggling to win over New Hampshire voters, to undercut an opponent."

Stung by those ads in Iowa, where he faded from first in the polls in Iowa a few weeks ago to a fourth-place finish in the Iowa caucus on Tuesday, Gingrich told Bloomberg a week ago that he would go after Romney in New Hampshire: "We're going to have a great time with Romney in New Hampshire. He'll win, probably, but it will be much more interesting than he wants.

"Each race generates a wave of national media," Gingrich added. "My goal is to have this become a race between a Massachusetts moderate and a Georgia conservative."

Gingrich previously pledged to run a positive campaign, according to The Hill, in hopes voters would punish his opponents for going negative.

The ad portrays Gingrich's proposal as "a powerful plan for growing our economy and creating jobs."

EMAIL: twalch@desnews.com

Try out the new DeseretNews.com design!
try beta learn more
Get The Deseret News Everywhere