Gingrich would appear to have a long way to go to before claiming the GOP nomination — former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won both the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary, and is leading in polls in South Carolina and Florida.

Still, Gingrich said his plan is modeled after Abraham Lincoln's strategy in his campaign against Democrat Stephen Douglas. The former House Speaker told his audience that Lincoln wanted to debate as much as possible, but when Douglas refused, Lincoln followed him around the country and responded to every Douglas speech.

He said Douglas quickly decided that it made more sense just to debate Lincoln directly, and finally agreed to seven debates over a two-month period.


"Now let me be clear: I will accept that the President can use a teleprompter," Gingrich said. "After all, if you had to defend ObamaCare, wouldn't you want the teleprompter?

"I believe that I can tell the truth without notes better than he can dissemble on teleprompter."

He said his preference is for each debate to last three hours, and have a timekeeper but no moderator. Gingrich also added that if Obama were to refuse these debates, he would appear unable to defend his own policies.

"On that other hand, if he doesn't agree, I'll follow him all the way up to election day and the country will understand he can't defend his policies," Gingrich said. "He will look like a man who, having gone to Columbia and Harvard and been the best orator of the Democratic Party, was afraid to debate a teacher from West Georgia College, and that will certainly reduce his prestige a great deal."

Gingrich also repeated his claim that Obama has been more successful than any other president in putting Americans on food stamps.