WASHINGTON -- Newt Gingrich says his hardline conservative views and sharp debate skills will be needed by Republicans to take back the White House.
The former House speaker is dismissing rival Mitt Romney as a moderate whose record on health care and other issues are too close to President Barack Obama's to invigorate GOP voters.
Coming off a big victory in Saturday's South Carolina primary, Gingrich said he can go "toe to toe with President Obama on big things."
Gingrich said his views on lower taxes, less government regulation and foreign policy put him in stark contrast to Obama and that the dynamics of a Gingrich-Obama fight are much more alluring to voters.
Gingrich told CNN's "State of the Union" that he represents "the largest amount of change of any candidate."
Gingrich also struck back at Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.), for saying that his charge that President Barack Obama is a "food stamp president" has racist connotations. "I think it's unfortunate that liberal leaders, whatever their ethnic background, can't have an honest debate about policies that fail...Do you want a paycheck president, in which case, my years in office, first with Reagan, and then as speaker, combine 27 million jobs created for the American people in those two periods. A pretty good test. Or do you want a food stamp president?"
On CBS' "Face The Nation," Gingrich continued his attacks on Romney. "You end up with a guy who is a very good salesman, who very much wants to sell, but has a very weak product," he said, according to Politico. "I think he's been dancing on eggs, trying..to find a version of Romney that would work."
"It was almost as though ABC was an arm of the Romney campaign, deliberately trying to set the stage and rig the game," said Gingrich, referring to the network's interview with his ex-wife Marianne, who accused the former House speaker of wanting an "open marriage" in a recent interview with ABC News' Brian Ross.