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Gingrich: Romney campaign will be ‘unendingly dirty and dishonest’ to win

Newt Gingrich on Wednesday urged supporters to “warn” all their friends that Mitt Romney’s campaign is getting down and dirty because it’s afraid Gingrich win South Carolina.

“I fully expect the Romney campaign to be unendingly dirty and dishonest the next four days, because they’re discovering they can’t buy this,” Gingrich said at a campaign stop in Warrenville, S.C. “I think they have internal polls saying they’re going to lose this.”

{mosads}Gingrich is polling in second place but well behind Romney in recent polls of South Carolina voters. The state votes on Jan. 21.

Gingrich’s comments followed a coordinated attack launched by Romney’s campaign on Wednesday to discredit Gingrich’s leadership as House Speaker in the 1990s.

Romney usually focuses on campaigning against Obama in his stump speeches, a tactic intended to highlight him as the front-runner in the race. But Romney targeted Gingrich at a campaign stop Wednesday. Meanwhile his campaign unrolled a new Web ad and unleashed two former members of Congress to blast Gingrich as an “unreliable leader.” 

It was Gingrich who focused most of his criticism on the president at his first campaign stop on Wednesday, a well-attended town-hall meeting in Warrenville, S.C.

He had already addressed Romney’s attacks when approached by reporters earlier in the day, accusing the campaign of throwing “the kitchen sink” at Gingrich in order to bring him down.

“Maybe they’re bored. Maybe they have excess money,” he suggested.

“My question back to Gov. Romney is, show us how many Republicans you helped elect in the ’80s when you weren’t for Reagan and Bush,” Gingrich said. “They’re saying I helped reelect a Democrat? That’s just stupid.”

In Warrenville, Gingrich didn’t name names but put himself in a “different league” from the other Republican candidates. “We’ve got lots of candidates who can make speeches, but you’ve got to actually get something done,” he said, crediting himself for balancing the budget and passing welfare reform while in office.

“I’m the only candidate who has helped design national campaigns,” he continued.

Gingrich’s campaign on Wednesday also released a list of 11 current and 11 former members of Congress willing to praise the candidate’s “leadership skills during his time as Speaker, creating 11 million new jobs, balancing the budget, controlling spending, and reducing poverty levels.”

Romney took aim at Gingrich’s job-creator claim at one of his campaign events Wednesday.

“Congressmen taking responsibility or taking credit for helping to create jobs is like Al Gore taking credit for the Internet,” Romney he said in Spartanburg, S.C. “The Speaker the other day at the debate was talking about how he created millions of jobs when he was working with the Reagan administration. He’d been in Congress two years when Ronald Reagan came in to office. That’d be like saying 435 members of Congress are all responsible for those jobs. Government doesn’t create jobs. It’s the private sector that creates jobs.”

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