BOILING SPRINGS, South Carolina—Newt Gingrich set the bar high for his performance in South Carolina, in a quick stop at Grapevine Restaurant here.
“The only way to go stop a Massachusetts moderate is to vote for Newt Gingrich,” he said. “With your help, we’ll have a tremendous, tremendous victory today.”
Gingrich was upbeat after surging in recent polling in part due to two strong debate performances. He was warmly received by diners and well-wishers in the full — but not packed — restaurant. “Polls are good, votes are better,” he said, instructing attendees to “Email, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube” their friends.
The former Speaker of the House hit on an array of local issues, from the National Labor Relations Board to the state’s controversial immigration law.
Gingrich is already looking ahead to Florida, saying he’s bring the “spirit and strength of the people of South Carolina to the White House.”
“If you convince all your friends and neighbors to come out and vote today, then we’re going to have a very big success today — it sets the stage to go to Florida and beyond Florida to take on President Obama,” he said.
Gingrich added that he’s “thrilled” with the response so far from South Carolinians,
“We’ve proved that ideas and people beat money and consultant,” he said in a shot directed at the one-time front-runner Mitt Romney.
Asked by reporters to elaborate on his remark yesterday that the campaign had seen a “significant uptick” in fundraising since Gingrich’s debate performance Monday, spokesman R.C. Hammond declined.
“Why would I tell you that now, when in twelve hours they're going to be even better?” he said confidently.