A new ad from a super PAC supporting presidential candidate Newt Gingrich isn’t a left-wing attack on Mitt Romney, Gingrich said on Tuesday.
"I don't think I'm using the language of the Left. I'm using the language of classic American populism," he said on Fox and Friends. "Main Street has always been suspicious of Wall Street."
The ad targets Gingrich opponent and the front-runner Mitt Romney as a predatory capitalist who was “playing the system for a quick buck” during his time at private-equity firm Bain Capital.
The film features poignant interviews with people who lost jobs at companies bought and then later dissolved by Bain.
“This is the type of criticism we've come to expect from President Obama and his left-wing allies at MoveOn.org,” Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said in an e-mail responding to the video on Sunday.
But Gingrich on Tuesday assured that he is all for capitalism, free enterprise, and entrepreneurship.
“There's a big difference between people who go out to create a company, even if they fail, if they try in the right direction, if they share in the hardships, if they're out there with the workers doing it together, that's one thing,” he said on Fox. “But if somebody who is very wealthy comes in, takes over your company, takes out all the cash and leaves behind the unemployment, I think that's not a model we want to advocate."
Though just weeks ago, Gingrich criticized Romney for his negative ads, calling them “disgusting,” the former House speaker on Tuesday returned to Romney’s then-defense of the ads that the primary is the right time to weed out all weaknesses.
“Obama and Axelrod aren't raising a billion dollars for fun,” Gingrich said on CNN on Tuesday. “All of us should be tested in January, February, March, to make sure that whoever gets the nomination is tough enough to stand up to Obama.”
In an environment where he is faced with negative ads from other candidates, Gingrich argued that he didn’t have a choice but to play the game with everybody else. "If you unilaterally disarm, you might as well drop out of the race,” he said.
Still, Gingrich distanced himself from the "King of Bain" ad and its corresponding super PAC, saying he has “no direct relationship with them.”
“I’ve never seen the film,” he said. “My hope is that it's totally factually accurate, that it can be totally defended. I wouldn't like to see something be put up to attack any of the candidates that isn't factually correct.”