Gingrich lays off staff, refocuses campaign
March 27th, 2012
10:58 PM ET
2 years ago

Gingrich lays off staff, refocuses campaign

Washington (CNN) - Newt Gingrich has replaced his campaign manager and is laying off one-third of his staff, but has vowed to continue his bid for the Republican presidential nomination, a spokesman confirms to CNN.

"The campaign is being redesigned to make it convention ready," spokesman R.C. Hammond said. "Speaker Gingrich is committed to going all the way to Tampa."

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Michael Krull, who took over as campaign manager in June 2011, is leaving. Krull is being replaced by longtime Gingrich aide Vince Haley.

Hammond described Krull's departure as amicable.

"He should be applauded for the role he played," Hammond said. Krull remained with the campaign, as did Hammond, when many of Gingrich's staffers, including his senior leadership team, quit last summer.

News of the Gingrich campaign shakeup was first reported by Politico.

Hammond said the campaign will spend the coming months leading up to the Republican National Convention trying to convince Republicans - specifically delegates - that the former House speaker is the best choice to be the GOP nominee. In doing so, the campaign will refocus its strategy.

"We are going to invest in online, low-cost communications," Hammond said. "In many ways we will be talking directly to the delegates."

"The only way to beat Barack Obama is to have a distinct choice," Hammond said. "Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum will lose to Barack Obama."

Gingrich communications director Joe DeSantis characterized the campaign changes as reorganization and a refocusing of the campaign.

DeSantis said a Gingrich campaign event scheduled for Wednesday at Georgetown University in Washington would proceed as planned, as would events slated for later this week in Maryland and Wisconsin.

Fellow candidate Rick Santorum reacted to the news of Gingrich’s campaign shakeup at a rally in Wisconsin.

“One of the things I was told very early on in presidential politics is you're running for president as long as somebody hangs in,” Santorum said. “And so I can certainly understand that. I don't know what his plans are, as I said before. We're going to run our race irrespective of who's in and who's out. I think what we're seeing is the race is clearly becoming a two-person race.”

Santorum added he thought Gingrich was “a good man” and a friend.

“I just wish him the best whatever he decides to do,” Santorum said.

CNN estimates Gingrich has 134 delegates, well behind front-runner Mitt Romney, who is estimated to have won 559 delegates, and Santorum, who has 262. A candidate needs 1,144 delegates to secure the GOP nomination.

In a CNN/ORC International Poll released Tuesday, six out of 10 Republicans said Gingrich should drop out of the race, with 39% saying Gingrich should not end his bid. A majority of Republicans questioned in the survey said their party's presidential nomination should be determined by the primaries and caucuses rather than at the GOP convention in Tampa, Florida.

CNN’s Shawna Shepherd and Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.

Also see:

Palin congratulates Santorum over 'bulls-' remark

Gingrich campaign charges $50 for photos

Paul: Don't count me out

Romney not worried about Sanoturm, labels Russia No. 1 'foe'


Filed under: 2012 • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. Robyn

    It is so gratifying to see a chief executive who can blame all of his personal failings and shortcomings on his staff and take no personal responsibilities for any of his failures or screwups. Dont change the captain when the ship hits an iceberg. Fire the people stoking the furnace. It is just so darn 'Republican'.

    March 28, 2012 02:40 am at 2:40 am |
  2. refman sees

    He is on a low budget now you see him and now you don't PR campaign. Light the lights the party's over kind of campaign that gives him more clout in the speech making industry after the presidential run is over! The big boys did not bless him so he is out in the cold!

    March 28, 2012 02:42 am at 2:42 am |
  3. Patricksday

    Good for Newt! Stay the course until the bitter end.

    March 28, 2012 02:59 am at 2:59 am |
  4. deeceeuci

    Just pouring good money after bad. He should buy property instead and do something worthwhile with the money.

    March 28, 2012 03:00 am at 3:00 am |
  5. deeceeuci

    Just flushing good money after bad. There are better things to do with this money than chase a presidency he will NEVER have. I mean while he was trying to get Clinton out of office for cheating he himself was being brought up on ethics charges and cheating on his then wife.

    March 28, 2012 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  6. no

    One word..... NO.

    March 28, 2012 03:04 am at 3:04 am |
  7. Guest

    I really don't understand why he is staying in. He won't win, and he is dividing the Republican party up further....

    March 28, 2012 03:15 am at 3:15 am |
  8. luke

    Time for Newt the Grinch to go back to West Georgia College and teach Implosion Politics 101 and after class he can meet with the Immoral Minority Club.

    March 28, 2012 03:44 am at 3:44 am |
  9. Bob Frick

    The three Presidential wannabe's are hangin' around to make sure Romney doesn't garner enough delegates before the convention in Tampa, thereby opening up the floor to a food fight – may the candidate with the most money win.

    March 28, 2012 04:10 am at 4:10 am |
  10. Capt. Obvious

    Ron Paul's name once again avoided. Ignoring he has more delegates than Gingrinch and Santorum combined won't change the results, CNN.

    March 28, 2012 04:16 am at 4:16 am |
  11. Ed Dean

    I am sorry to say but Gingrich your just too old and have been on the fence way too many times agreeing with both parties which ever way you wanted at the time.

    March 28, 2012 04:23 am at 4:23 am |
  12. Possum

    ...proving he's delusional as ever.

    March 28, 2012 04:58 am at 4:58 am |
  13. Hotkiwi

    Since a long time we know that the Republicans have no credible candidate for being the president. Why do we support the fact that they keep wasting money on their campaigns? It is hilarious to hear any candidate of the GOP trying to kill off the other and then blunder in their own speeches. lets just give Obama the next term. is going to happen anyway and invest the money in our sick health care system, one of the worst globally.

    March 28, 2012 05:04 am at 5:04 am |
  14. Jesus C

    There ya go. If you put Newt in the White House, he'll begin lay offs rather than create jobs.

    March 28, 2012 05:30 am at 5:30 am |
  15. sl1966

    It is sad that this megalomaniac thinks he is still relevant and decides to fire staff instead of himself

    March 28, 2012 05:37 am at 5:37 am |
  16. works4me

    I don't care. It says a lot about America that this slime ball Newt got to where he is. Must be his staffs fault.
    He'll be driving a Disney tram by the end of the year.

    March 28, 2012 05:45 am at 5:45 am |
  17. MSL58

    Gingrich leaving the race?
    Thank you, Jesus!!!

    March 28, 2012 05:58 am at 5:58 am |
  18. jonlline

    Just hang it up Newt. You reminded us why we disliked you so much before. Shame really. I, for one, probably would not have remembered.

    March 28, 2012 06:01 am at 6:01 am |
  19. JR

    So? Is that going to get him 900 delegates? What a joke.

    March 28, 2012 06:01 am at 6:01 am |
  20. NFLD thought

    Newt, go away; nobody wants you as President. Maybe head up to Alaska and hang with Sarah for a while.

    March 28, 2012 06:10 am at 6:10 am |
  21. malicric

    Theoretically Newt its time to get out. Apparently no one has as high an opinion of yuou as you do of yourself.

    However I hope you'll stay in. I dont want to see ANY of the curren t "crop" of Republicans win in November. If your staying in helps that, so much the better. Three out of the four runners are rigid ideologues and the fourth (Romney) a flip flopper who is currently pandering to get the nomination. What a bumper crop!

    March 28, 2012 06:11 am at 6:11 am |
  22. john

    When there still are so many unemployed in the country, laying off 1/3 of your staff and thinking you have a chance at the presidential bid is beyond foolish.

    March 28, 2012 06:11 am at 6:11 am |
  23. The Quiet Man

    Let me get this straight... This clown just laid off a third of his campaign staff and he thinks HE is going to create more jobs for Americans?

    March 28, 2012 06:32 am at 6:32 am |
  24. NATHAN WIMBERLY

    The Citizens United billionaire left Lizard twisting in the wind. He lied about those people giving him small amouts of money. Must be those bold solutions like going to the moon colony and child janitors. Obama/Biden 2012!

    March 28, 2012 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
  25. Anonymous

    Job creation, job creation, job creation and I get laid off.

    March 28, 2012 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
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