Gingrich bills himself a "genuine old-time conservative"

If elected president, Newt Gingrich says he would cut the deficit primarily by modernizing the U.S. economy, doing away with the energy department, reforming the EPA, privatizing the housing department's holdings, and no tax increases. Dean Reynolds reports.
Gingrich on deficit reduction
Newt Gingrich

MUSCATINE, Iowa - In his closing speech to Iowa voters before tonight's caucuses, Newt Gingrich chose to reach for a bygone era, telling a group that he is a "a genuine old-time conservative who represents the values of my grandmother's generation."

Speaking at a crowded tea house in Muscatine, Iowa, Gingrich began by thanking Iowans for taking the caucus process so seriously.

"It's a terrific way to start this," the former House speaker told the crowd. "Because it makes every candidate come out from behind the TV ads and the consultants and all that stuff, and really face the voters."

Gingrich stuck largely to the same talking points he's been hitting on the trail all week - decrying the negative attacks that have been hitting him on both TV and in the mail, while pushing his accomplishments working with Ronald Reagan in the 1980s and as speaker of the House in the 1990s as evidence that he is the only candidate with the experience to turn the country around.

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