Gingrich: Romney 'far and away' likely nominee
April 8th, 2012
11:00 AM ET
11 years ago

Gingrich: Romney 'far and away' likely nominee

(CNN) – Newt Gingrich, who remains in the race for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, conceded Sunday that his rival Mitt Romney was about as close as it gets to becoming the party's presidential nominee.

"I think you have to be realistic," Gingrich said on "Fox News Sunday." The former House speaker was responding to a question about his intentions going forward in the Republican nominating fight.

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"Given the size of his organization, given the number of primaries he's won, he is far and away the most likely Republican nominee," Gingrich said of Romney, a former governor of Massachusetts. "If he does get to 1,144 delegates, I'll support him. I'll do everything I can this fall to help him beat President Obama. The entire goal of the Republican primary has to be to defeat Barack Obama. It's what makes this probably the most important election of our lifetime."

Gingrich's organization announced in early April it was reducing the size of its staff and cutting back on the number of campaign stops, choosing to focus instead on wooing delegates to August's Republican National Convention in Tampa.

On Sunday, Gingrich said he would use any influence remaining to help determine the platform of the GOP.

"I think platforms matter in the long-term evolution of the party," Gingrich said. "The party is more than just the presidential candidate."

The candidate cited energy independence, social security reform, and religious liberty as issues he would advocate for at the Republican convention.

Despite the now-long odds of becoming the GOP nominee, Gingrich said he was happy he made his bid.

"I'm glad I did this," he said. "For me it was important as a citizen to try to do some very hard things. To try to bring new ideas and new approaches. It turned out to be much harder than I thought it would be, but it was the right thing for me to do, both in my life and where I thought the country was. I have no regrets."

The power of Romney's powerful organization, bolstered by many in the Republican establishment, proved difficult to overcome, Gingrich said.

"It's clear Gov. Romney did a very good job of building a very substantial machine. And I think as Santorum is discovering in Pennsylvania right now, it's a challenge," he said.

Gingrich added that a powerful negative ad campaign from Romney and his supportive super PAC eventually wore away at his presidential prospects.

"I hit him as hard as I could, he hit me hard as he could," he said. "Turns out he had more things to hit with than I did. And that's part of the business."

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Filed under: 2012 • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Republicans are waking up to the fact that the candidate selected by big oil. Wall Street, Fox foreign owned media, ALEC, NRA, the Kochs and Rove, has bought the republican nomination. Personhood presidential candidate, Mittens has spent over $60 million so far, and yet, he has captured only 40% of the republican vote.

    April 8, 2012 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  2. GI Joe

    I think Gingrich is staying in so he and Queen Callista can travel, sell, books, and get free room and board while his company goes bankrupt. Why not? Half of those "free" funds are government matching (taxpayer's dollars). The greedy ole man knows how to work the system to his own personal benefit.

    April 8, 2012 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  3. Donkey Party

    "The entire goal of the Republicans is to defeat Barack Obama".

    And there you have it folks. You can either support and vote for Democrats and Independents, who are intent on solving the country's issues at home and abroad, or you can vote for Republicans, whose singular priority is to regain power so their corporate and evangelical masters can impose their will upon us.

    April 8, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  4. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Mittens did not cause the Bush/republican near depression, but President Obama ended it. Mittens did not cause the loss of 8 million jobs in Bush's last three years, but Obama ended it and created 4 million private sector jobs in 25 consecutive months of job growth. Mittens did not start the war in Iraq, but President Obama ended it. Mittens did not cause Bush's last budget to have a $1.37 trillion deficit, but President Obama has lowered it $400 billion to $977 billion during the worst economic times in our recent history. Mittens did not overlook the mastermind of 9/11, bin Laden, like Bush, but President Obama brought the terrorist to justice.

    April 8, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  5. Emmy Skaddittle

    yep, getting the black guy out of the white house will be the most important think newt does in his lifetime

    April 8, 2012 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  6. Pete

    They are playing to the rabid right with statements like "The entire goal of the Republican primary has to be to defeat Barack Obama. It's what makes this probably the most important election of our lifetime.' – But they are missing out on the fact that this sounds incredibly hyper-partisan, or worse, racist to those who aren't rabid right wingers or bigots. That kind of rhetoric may energize a large portion of their base, but it ostracizes the middle and sends away some people they had in pocket. It's a losing proposition overall. Most of us see Obama as a left-leaning individual whose policies are pretty squarely in the middle since he figured that's the best thing for the American people. I give President Obama credit for thinking things like "I'd like to do x, but we'll go with something more centrist because that's what the people want". Can't say the same thing for Republicans right now, they'd get purity tested out of the GOP.

    April 8, 2012 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  7. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Senator slime McConnell, from Kentucky, aka KY's jelly, announced that his number one goal was to defeat President Obama before he was sworn in. That is not how to put our country first.

    April 8, 2012 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  8. Ron

    Yep, that's right: the entire goal of the Republican Party had been to defeat Obama since he was elected. The goal has not been to work for the betterment of the country. In fact they've done everything they could do to keep the economy from recovery so as to beat Obama.

    April 8, 2012 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  9. B

    This overstuffed has-been finally got something right, unfortunately Romney Robot will be left on the political loading platform in the fall.

    April 8, 2012 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  10. vic , nashville ,tn

    Defeat Obama in 2012 then why some republicans organizing 2016 campaign !

    April 8, 2012 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  11. gregory21

    How a working class person can belong to the rep. party, is beyond me. You realy have to be brain washed to beleave in the trickel down effect.The job creators and rich only care how to make more money and put it in there pockets. You are only a number and when they don't need you,you are gone.

    April 8, 2012 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  12. BeverlyNC

    Doesn't matter – President Obama has already won the loyalty, hearts and minds of the American People by working every day to restore our economy, 25 months of job creation, constant programs and efforts to help the People with jobs, housing, healthcare, end to war, and education and futures focus for a successful America for the next generation. He is the People's President. He represents ALL Americans. That is what real leaders do and what the President takes an oath to do. Republicans have no one qualified to represent America or do anything good for the nation. Every single policy they have is destructive and will again destroy America. Kill Medicare. Kill Social Security. Kill jobs by favoring corporate special interests. Lower taxes on the rich even more while raising them on the middle class. Republicans represent one group – white, rich, elitist, MEN and have shown to disrespect women, workers, the poor, and anyone not of their "class". They are against the People who make up the backbone of this nation and are therefore not qualified for any local, state, or national office. I stand with my President because he stands up and fights for me and every other American.

    April 8, 2012 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  13. Patrick from Minnesota

    Newt, go home. We stopped listening to you back in January.

    April 8, 2012 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  14. Lee

    Sounds like Newt is using past tense words as if he is dropping out if the race. Now maybe Rick Santorum will get beat one-on-one and be left with no excuses. (Sorry Ron Paul, nobody has claimed to loose because of you being in the race. )

    April 8, 2012 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  15. Reggie from LA

    "We cannot fail on this. You heard what Mitch said. We've gotta make our goal to beat Obama and make him a 1-termer."
    "But what about jobs and the economy? People need help. Deregulation of Wall Street? This is serious stuff."
    "We are and have all been marching to the same drum beat for years ("Thanks, Sarah, for your megaphone"). Beat Obama. Beat Obama." "But what about the serious issues we face in America that require good representation and solid legislation?" "Beat Obama...Beat Obama....and if need be, CHEAT Obama....Blame Obama...misrepresent Obama, but defeat Obama.

    April 8, 2012 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |