Gingrich Web ad rips Romney over taxes

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The ad, called “Moderate Mitt broke his campaign pledge not to raise taxes,” runs through a list of fees, which the Gingrich campaign calls “a tax by another name,” that it says turned Massachusetts into one of the worst states in the country for job creation while Romney was governor.

“As a candidate for governor, Massachusetts moderate Mitt Romney pledged not to raise taxes,” the ad reads. “But after he was elected he raised tax after tax after tax. Romney said they were fees, but everybody knows that a fee is a tax by another name.”

The Gingrich campaign listed more than two-dozen groups it said were hit with new fees under the Romney administration, including veterans, blind people, horseback riding instructors and people who get tested for tuberculosis, whom, according to the ad, were charged $50 for a negative test but $400 for a positive test.

“Romney raised taxes by over $700,000,000 dollars,” the ad continued. “That’s $700,000,000. Romney’s Massachusetts ranked first in the nation for fee hikes and near the bottom (47th) in job creation, because taxes kill jobs.”

The ad also quotes Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) slamming Romney during the 2008 GOP primary for raising taxes. Last week, McCain endorsed Romney for the 2012 Republican nomination.

“(Romney) raised taxes by $730 million,” McCain said at the time. “He called them fees. I’m sure the people that had to pay it — whether they called them bananas, they still had to pay $730 million extra.”

The tone of the ad is sharply different from the positive campaign Gingrich said he was intent on running until a slew of negative ads from Romney and Ron Paul super-PACs sunk him in the polls.

Gingrich has repeatedly called on Romney to disavow the negative ads against him, which he says are false, although campaigns are not allowed to coordinate with the super-PACs.

On Monday, Gingrich told reporters that the barrage of negative advertising against him made it impossible to continue running a purely positive campaign.

Monday’s Web ad was released by the Gingrich campaign directly, not by a Gingrich-backing super-PAC.