First Rick Perry took aim at President Obama for his administration’s so-called “war on religion.”
Now, Newt Gingrich is using the same phrase against his GOP primary rival Mitt Romney.
In a new robo-call in Florida, the former House speaker is charging that the former Massachusetts governor and Sunshine State frontrunner once “vetoed a bill paying for kosher food for our seniors in nursing homes -- Holocaust survivors, who for the first time, were forced to eat non-kosher, because Romney thought $5 was too much to pay for our grandparents to eat kosher.”
Reports The Huffington Post:
The allegation made in the call, obtained by anti-robocall activist Shaun Dakin, is undoubtedly targeted at Florida’s large Jewish and elderly populations.
The call is referencing Romney’s veto of a 2003 bill. It came at a time that some nursing homes were considering eliminating their kosher kitchens during a period of budget cuts. Their plan was to instead bus in kosher food from other locations. The bill Romney vetoed would have given an additional $600,000 in funding to nursing homes, therefore making it possible for them to continue cooking kosher food on site.
Romney’s camp has fired back that the call is just the latest “desperate attempt” by Gingrich’s camp to gain a leg up in the polls. Gingrich trails Romney in Florida by as much as 20 points, according to recent surveys.
The call tells voters they can “end Mitt Romney’s hypocrisy on religious freedom” – reprising an argument that Gingrich himself made against Romney during a Monday night appearance on Fox News Channel.
“I think Governor Romney is extraordinarily insensitive to religious freedom in America,” Gingrich said during an interview with FNC’s Bret Baier. “And the Obama administration is clearly engaged in a war on religion. ... Republicans ought to look at Romney’s record and tell me where I’m technically wrong. I frankly didn’t know the kosher food being cut out by Governor Romney until I think it was the New York Post reported it yesterday. Every time we peel back the onion there is something new there.”