Newt: I’m Not Backing Down From Bain Attack

Calls it “more pious baloney.”

Jim Cole / AP

Newt Gingrich is calling a report that he regrets attacking Mitt Romney on his Bain career “misleading.”

Spokesman R.C. Hammond says Gingrich never said he had crossed the line, and maintained that Romney’s decision to base his candidacy in large part on his record at Bain and Company made his work their fair game.

Gingrich has come under fire from some Republicans for embracing a Democratic line of attack, a sentiment echoed by Romney on his campaign plane earlier today.

“We’ve understood for a long time that the Obama people would come after free enterprise,” Romney told reporters, BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins reports. “Little surprised to see Newt Gingrich as the first witness for the prosecution, but I don’t think that’s going to hurt my efforts.”

The campaign’s statement is below:

Response To Misleading Report Re: Gingrich Exchange with SC Voter

Spartanburg, SC – Newt 2012 released the following statement from Press Secretary R.C. Hammond responding to misleading reports on an exchange Newt Gingrich had with a voter in Spartanburg, SC regarding Mitt Romney’s record at Bain Capital (during which the phrase “I crossed the line” was never uttered from Newt, despite the headline from Politico):

“This issue at hand is neither about Bain Capital, private equity firms, nor about capitalism. It is about Mitt Romney’s judgment and character. It was Governor Romney’s decision to base his candidacy, in large part, on his background as a portfolio manager. Thus, it is entirely legitimate to ask questions about whether he is accurately presenting how he conducted himself during that career.

“Reports by the Wall Street Journal and others contradict Governor Romney’s claims that it was his goal at Bain Capital to make companies more successful. In fact, there were cases where Bain Capital made huge profits and left companies bankrupt. Further reports have cast doubt on Governor Romney’s claim that he was responsible for 100,000 jobs being created thanks to his work at Bain Capital.

“Instead of accepting the responsibility to answer questions about his business background, the Romney campaign is throwing up a smokescreen about an attack on capitalism. That’s just more pious baloney from Mitt Romney and his campaign.”

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