The Romney campaign has escalated its attack on former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich as he pulls even with the former Massachusetts governor in Florida polling, calling him "unhinged" in its latest email to reporters.
It's the harshest adjective used against Gingrich yet by the Romney campaign, following "unreliable," "zany," and "sleazy."
Here's the email from the campaign.
UNHINGED: DR. NEWT AND MR. HYDE
GINGRICH LEADS “OCCUPY MOUNT DORA” RALLY AGAINST FREE ENTERPRISE SYSTEM
“Wow.” –Gail Gitcho, Romney Communications Director
Yesterday, “Dr. Newt” Talked About His Sweeping Vision For The Future:
“[Gingrich] Said His Plans Are Another In A Long Line Of Great American Ideas.” “As Gingrich presented his bold vision for space, he said his plans are another in a long line of great American ideas. In so doing, perhaps he was embracing the epithet that has so often been hurled at him, that he is ‘grandiose.’ ‘I accept the charge that I am American and Americans are instinctively grandiose because we believe in a bigger future,’ he said.” (“Newt To The Moon,” ABCNews.com, 1/25/12)
But This Morning In Florida, “Mr. Hyde” Showed Up To Lash Out In Anger And Double Down On His Failed And Discredited Attacks On Free Enterprise:
Echoing President Obama And His Liberal Allies, Gingrich Railed Against “Wall Street” And “Big Companies.” GINGRICH: “Make no bones about it: this is a campaign for the very nature of the Republican Party and the very opportunity for a citizen conservatism to defeat the power of money and to prove that people matter more than Wall Street and that people matter more than all of the big companies that are pouring the cash in to run the ads that are false.” (Newt Gingrich, Remarks in Mount Dora, FL, 1/26/12)
Conservatives Have Already Condemned Gingrich’s Anti-Free Enterprise, “Michael Moore” Rhetoric:
The Wall Street Journal: “About the best that can be said about the Republican attacks on Mitt Romney's record at Bain Capital is that President Obama is going to do the same thing eventually … Yet that hardly absolves Newt Gingrich … and others for their crude and damaging caricatures of modern business and capitalism. Politics isn't subtle, and these candidates are desperate, but do they have to sound like Michael Moore?” (Editorial, “The Bain Capital Bonfire,” The Wall Street Journal, 1/11/12)
National Review: “[T]o abominate Mitt Romney for having been a success at the business of investing in struggling American companies, connecting entrepreneurs with capital and producers with markets, is foolish and destructive. Republicans ought to know better, and the fact that Gingrich et al. apparently do not is the most disturbing commentary on the state of the primary field so far.” (Editorial, “Romney’s Profitable Past,” National Review, 1/10/12)
Rush Limbaugh: “I don't care what you think, folks, the attacks that they mounted on Romney are not defensible. … I'm sorry, folks, that is indefensible. There's no way you can try to dress that up. I don't understand it. Well, politically I understand it, but that's just absurd. It's sad. … This is the language of leftists like Michael Moore and Oliver Stone. … This is not conservatism. It's the polar opposite of conservatism. It's the language used to take away economic freedom.” (RushLimbaugh.com, 1/11/12)
Americans for Prosperity’s Tim Phillips: “The American people deserve a vigorous campaign of contrasts on the records of candidates and their policy proposals, not heavy-handed, populist tinged attacks on free enterprise. … [W]e are disappointed to see attacks from some Republican presidential candidates on Mitt Romney and Bain Capital, which sink to the level of some of the worst anti-free market, class envy politics constantly pushed by the Obama Administration and those in the Occupy camps.” (Americans For Prosperity, Press Release, 1/11/12)
Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA): “I’m really disappointed in Speaker Gingrich. … Free enterprise is so much on trial [and Gingrich] is feeding into that narrative. … It does serve the Left to have Republicans attacking this fundamental feature [of capitalism].” (National Review, 1/17/12)
Club For Growth’s Chris Chocola: “Newt Gingrich’s attacks on Mitt Romney’s record at Bain Capital are disgusting. … Attacking Governor Romney for participating in free-market capitalism is just beyond the pale for any purported ‘Reagan Conservative.’ Newt Gingrich should stop his attacks on free markets and apologize to Governor Romney for them.” (Club For Growth, Press Release, 1/9/12)
American Enterprise Institute’s James Pethokoukis: “Romney’s career as a free-market capitalist? No apologies necessary.” (James Pethokoukis, “Romney Doesn’t Need To Apologize For His Bain Career,” AEI’s “The Enterprise,” 1/9/12)
National Review’s Jay Nordlinger: “The last two presidential election cycles have revealed a stinking hypocrisy in conservatives: They profess their love of capitalism and entrepreneurship, but when offered a real capitalist and entrepreneur, they go, ‘Eek, a mouse!’ And they tear him down in proud social-democrat fashion. In the off season, they sound like Friedrich Hayek. When the game is on, they sound like Huey Long, Bella Abzug, or Bob Shrum.” (Jay Nordlinger, “Conservatives Vs. Capitalism,” National Review, 1/9/12)
Investor’s Business Daily: “It was only a matter of time before Michael Moore would do a number on Mitt Romney and his private equity firm, Bain Capital. … But wait. That's not Moore putting out this stuff. It's Newt Gingrich … [t]aking shots at Mitt Romney for being a practicing capitalist. Capitalism is an economic system that, last we checked, all the Republican hopefuls heartily endorse. But lately they've been reading a script that sounds straight from the left wing of the Democratic Party.” (Editorial, “What If U.S. Government Got The Bain Treatment?” Investor’s Business Daily, 1/9/12)