Gingrich team launches fundraising drive, aims for ‘knockout punch’

Newt Gingrich, fresh off a strong victory in South Carolina's primary Saturday night, launched a "money bomb" fundraising drive, asking supporters to help him deliver a "knock out punch" in Florida.

On Saturday night, the Gingrich campaign emailed supporters to call for funds ahead of what will be a costly primary battle in the Sunshine state.

“Will you help us keep this momentum going by participating in our two-day ‘knockout punch’ money bomb?," asks the campaign email. 

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"As we look ahead to Florida and beyond, this campaign is going to continue to rely on millions of patriots from across the country rather than just a handful of wealthy donors and bundlers," it continues. 

"If you want to see a bold Reagan conservative as the nominee, and if you want to watch us run circles around Barack Obama in the debates with bold conservative ideas, then please make a donation today as part of our two-day ‘knockout punch’ money bomb!"

The Florida primary is on Jan. 31 and polls show Romney with a solid advantage in the state.

A CNN/Time/ORC poll released on Wednesday showed Gingrich in third place with 18 percent support from likely-GOP voters surveyed, behind former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum with 19 percent and well behind front-runner Mitt Romney at 43 percent.

A Public Policy Polling survey released on Monday also showed Romney the favorite in the Sunshine state with a 15 point lead over his rivals.

For Gingrich to defeat Romney again, he will need to spend heavily in a state with some of the most expensive media markets in the country.  

Romney is the only candidate who is airing ads in the state.  Additionally, he can count on the backing of Restore Our Future, a pro-Romney super-PAC which has run ads in the state on his behalf.

Gingrich upended the GOP race Saturday by riding a late surge to win the South Carolina primary. Despite his fundraising problems, he will be aided by two debates in Florida this week.  South Carolina exit polls showed many voters were swayed by Gingrich’s strong performance in debates ahead of the Palmetto state vote.