Manchester, New Hampshire (CNN) - Mitt Romney upped the ante in his battle with Newt Gingrich Monday, accusing the former House speaker of displaying "erratic outspokenness" in comments about Palestine last week.
In an interview with FOX News in a Manchester cafe, Romney said Gingrich had acted as a campaigner and not a president when he told a Jewish media outlet that Palestinians were an "invented" people. He charged Gingrich's comments had put him out ahead of Israel, a United States ally.
Gingrich showed "erratic outspokenness, which may be great in a campaign but is not great for someone who's running for president of the United States, representing this country," Romney said.
He also called on Gingrich to return the seven-figure sum he received from mortgage giant Freddie Mac, for whom he served as a consultant. Romney said Gingrich’s association with the company is another example of his deep ties to government.
“This was a connection with government kind of business. It’s very different than the private sector,” Romney said. “One of the things I think people recognize in Washington is that people go there to serve people and then they stay there to serve themselves.”
Romney brushed off criticism about a high-dollar bet he offered Texas Gov. Rick Perry in a Saturday night debate, calling the $10,000 wager an "outrageous number" for an "outrageous" claim.
Romney made the bet over Perry's claim the former Massachusetts governor had supported an individual health insurance mandate in his book.
The candidate was also asked by FOX about a dig by President Barack Obama about the time Romney has spent campaigning for office. Romney ran for Senate in 1994 and for president in 2008.
"Don't forget 25 years in the private sector is a little more than Barack Obama,” Romney said, referencing his business past. "Oh ya, zero years in the private sector, so pretty different backgrounds."
Romney will spend the day Monday campaigning in New Hampshire, where he picked up the endorsement of Manchester's Mayor Ted Gatsas.
He is scheduled to attend a fundraiser in New York Wednesday.
In a nod to another debate highlight, Romney's campaign co-opted a line by Rep. Michelle Bachmann, who lumped Romney and Gingrich together as "Newt Romney."
On Monday, they distributed a memo coining another name: "Newt Nancy," a reference to a television ad on a climate change initiative where Gingrich appeared alongside another House speaker, Nancy Pelosi.