While former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney take aim at eachother, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is hoping to get in on the action with an ad that targets both rivals for supporting individual health-care mandates.
On a campaign stop in South Carolina Thursday, Perry also attacked Gingrich’s multiple marriages , saying he made “an oath to God when I married my wife” and that it was “an important issue.” Together, the two charges are a sign that Perry has decided go negative on the new frontrunner. Romney has also gone after the thrice-married Gingrich by contrasting his own stable family life to that of his rival’s.
Trying to claw his way back into the top-tier of the GOP presidential race with only three weeeks to the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses, Perry ties his rivals to President Obama in the new ad and “the big government liberals.”
“We dont want government-mandated health-care,” the narrator said. ”Yet, Newt Gingrich supports it, and Mitt Romney, he put it into law in Massachusetts.”
The ad ends with President Obama signing his health-care law and concludes with Perry saying, “I won’t let the big government liberals ruin this country.”
The health-care mandate Romney implemented in Massachusetts has been a target of his foes for months, so it’s hard to imagine Perry’s ad will makeover public opinion. Gingrich’s past support for an individual mandate, however, has not gotten as much attention and could prove more damaging to the surging candidate.
In the South Carolina appearance, Perry pledged to stay out of the battle between Gingrich and Romney. “I’ll let those two get in the ring and go at it, I’ll be out campaigning, shaking hands and asking people to support me,” he said.
ButGingrich’s recent behavior suggets he’s itching to get in the fight.
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