Gingrich won't use surrogates to go negative
December 10th, 2011
09:07 PM ET
11 years ago

Gingrich won't use surrogates to go negative

Des Moines, Iowa (CNN) – Hours before Republican presidential candidates face off in Iowa, self-proclaimed positive campaigner Newt Gingrich took a veiled swipe at Mitt Romney, vowing to not use campaign surrogates to attack competitors or endorse third party groups who go negative on a candidate's behalf.

"I want you to know that my campaign will be relentlessly positive. Our advertising will be positive," Gingrich said, speaking to supporters Saturday at the opening of a campaign office in Urbandale Iowa.

Gingrich did not mention the former Massachusetts governor by name. But this week Romney's campaign mounted a coordinated effort with high-profile surrogates going after Gingrich's record.

"I will also tell you none of my surrogates are going to be encouraged to go out and attack anyone," he said, after former New Hampshire governor and Romney supporter John Sununu went personal and called the former House speaker self-serving and self-aggrandizing.

However, the Gingrich campaign is not above using surrogates to hit Romney. On Friday surrogates for Gingrich called those attacks, including a web ad critical of Gingrich's stance on a Republican entitlement reform initiative, a sign of "desperation and panic."

Restore Our Future super PAC, which is independently supporting Romney, produced the negative Gingrich spot, but the web ad was taken down shortly after it was posted on-line.

"There's no problem with people who want to compare records. Comparisons are fair," Gingrich said. "But there's a big difference, and everybody intuitively knows it, between negative attack ads that are deliberately destructive and legitimate comparison ads, and I have no complaint with people who want to compare."

The rising frontrunner said he will not engage in tearing down candidates and vowed he will not support any super PAC that produces negative campaign content on behalf of his campaign.

"If anybody does go out and create a super PAC using my name, if they run any negative ads, we will attack them and we will encourage people to give them no money," he said.

Also see:

Romney jabs Gingrich over space ideas

Santorum predicts last-minute surge

Gingrich, Romney joust via surrogates

Gingrich: Palestinians are an 'invented people'

Filed under: 2012 • Ads • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. CedarRapids

    "I want you to know that my campaign will be relentlessly positive. Our advertising will be positive," Gingrich said"

    ......the palestinians are a made up people......said to a jewish channel in order to get jewish votes.

    yeah, positive campaign, right.

    December 11, 2011 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  2. Joel2012

    The best defense when you have so many negatives like Newt is to appear as the knight in shining armor who is above the fray, etc. This is such a joke and nothing more than a smoke-screen to hide behind. Newt is not a man of principle, he is trying to take the high road in order to portray himself as being someone and something he is not. The last person to make the mistake of taking the high road in not exposing the truth about his opponents past associations and questionable positions is the one responsible for giving us four years of misery. Gentleman John McCain who was above using negative campaigning. Right. How did that work out? No one should get a pass to the presidency. Newt should have to stand on his record and his record needs to be exposed to the general public.

    December 11, 2011 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  3. GonzoinHouston

    Yeah, Newt wants to keep it positive, as long as he's winning. He has more skeletons in his closets than a medical school. As Speaker, Newt was the one telling GOP reps to go negative early. He has never run a remotely positive campaign. To his credit, he'd make a good adviser or idea man for a president, because every once in a while he does have a good idea. But leader of the free world? Fuggedaboutitt!

    December 11, 2011 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  4. Sam

    Was GOP formed to cater to all fools in America? Lol

    December 11, 2011 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  5. Shane Botwin

    Gingrich / Vitter 2012

    December 11, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  6. informed voter

    Someone commented, "Class act. This country will be a better place to live shortly after Gingrich defeats Obama and the clean-out of the Capitol is finished next November." How can the father of all that is putrid and vile in today's politics (Gingrich) clean up anything? Unless you've been asleep (or not alive) the last thirty years, you'd know that Newtered is the last person we need in the White House. Obama 2012, seriously.

    December 11, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |

    MARIEMD – Why don't you stick with something you know about. It's quite definite that you know nothing and are an unqualified MD if one. Anyone backing the fraud Obama has no sensible approach to qualify yourself as an authority to judge Newt Ginrich. He will be the next President of these United States. Your people will not catch America sleeping this next go around. We will take our Christian nation back.

    December 11, 2011 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  8. sayer

    Be careful who you vote for. They might become president. Occupy your voting booth and let your voice be heard.

    December 11, 2011 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  9. SecedingfromTexas

    Ever heard of MARYLAND, aka MD at the post office. (Could be a doctor, could be from Maryland, either way
    smarter than you.
    Your name is proof of your ignorance. Your name calling is proof of your pseudo-Christianity.

    December 11, 2011 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
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