Newt Gingrich's presidential team announced a significant scaling back of operations Tuesday that suggests the campaign may be approaching...

Share story

Newt Gingrich’s presidential team announced a significant scaling back of operations Tuesday that suggests the campaign may be approaching its final days.

The campaign is cutting one-third of its full-time staff and replacing its manager as part of an effort to sustain itself, campaign spokesman R.C. Hammond said. In addition, Gingrich will not travel as frequently to the remaining primary-contest states and will focus instead on communicating with voters via the Internet, videos and social media.

The news was first reported by Politico.

The Republican former House speaker has won just two state contests and is a distant third in the delegate count. His campaign has had a significant drop-off in fundraising and is running low on cash. Gingrich’s recently filed campaign-finance report, covering the period through the end of February, showed he had more debt than cash.

This week, save 90% on digital access.

A super PAC supporting Gingrich, which had received $16.5 million from casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and his family, has largely run out of cash, and there is no indication the Adelsons will continue to fund it. In the Illinois primary last week, Gingrich finished in fourth place, with 8 percent of the vote.

Despite this, Gingrich has pledged to stay in the race until the Republican National Convention in August, provided Mitt Romney doesn’t have the delegates needed to win before then.

Romney jokes

on Leno show

On Jay Leno’s “Tonight Show,” Republican presidential front-runner Mitt Romney was mostly business — though he slipped in a few jokes at the expense of his host and his main political opponent.

Romney cracked Tuesday night that he’d pick Leno rival David Letterman as his vice president, talked at length about health policy and said he’d be happy to have a rival of his own, Rick Santorum, serve in a Romney administration.

And when he was asked to pick just a word or two to describe potential running mates, Romney had choice words for Santorum: “Press secretary.” The jab played off the former Pennsylvania senator’s recent run-in with a New York Times reporter. Santorum had cursed at the reporter, accusing him of misinterpreting some of his remarks.

“I’m happy with him saying he’d like to be part of an administration with me,” Romney said of Santorum.

In his first interview with a late-night comic since announcing his presidential bid, Romney ran through his policy positions, saying he would keep popular provisions of the national health-care law that protect children and maintain some protections for people with pre-existing health conditions.


Unfavorable poll: Half of all Americans now express unfavorable views of Mitt Romney, a new high for the GOP presidential hopeful in Washington Post-ABC News polling. Negative impressions are up 8 percentage points in the past week. In the new poll, 50 percent of all adults and 52 percent of registered voters express unfavorable opinions of Romney, both higher, although marginally, than Obama has yet received in Post-ABC polling back to late 2006.

Electronics swiped: Laptops and iPads containing sensitive information about Mitt Romney’s campaign were stolen from an SUV in San Diego last week, the campaign confirmed Tuesday.

Seattle Times news services

Custom-curated news highlights, delivered weekday mornings.