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Newt Gingrich Issues Statement on Santorum's Departure, Tells Mike Huckabee He'll 'Finally Get to Be 1-on-1 With Romney'

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich was just on the Mike Huckabee Radio show, and commented on Santorum suspending his own presidential campaign just moments ago. On the show, Gingrich discussed finally getting to be '1-on-1' with Romney, how he will campaign going forward, and a possible debate in North Carolina with the current front-runner.

Below are some highlights from Huckabee's interview with Gingrich:

"I did not get a heads up in advance. We have been talking for two weeks, and I knew this was a real possibility in his mind. I do know that he had begun to realize that when you are up against all of Wall Street, it is very difficult. The money machine makes it difficult to have a competitive race."

"I am not focused on going after Romney; I want to

focus on the issues and Barack Obama. I will admit it was a slugging match in Florida; people who like me don't want me down in the gutter. We will see what Governor Romney decides. I am going to focus on the Republican platform and why Obama is a grave threat to this country."

"Our folks are making calls to undecideds and those for Rick [Santorum]; we have been talking to someone in North Carolina, and there may be a debate [...] between Romney and me. I would like to have an open dialogue - just the two of us, a chat."

Here is the full statement released by Gingrich's press secretary:

"New Bern, NC - Newt Gingrich released the following statement reacting to Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum suspending his campaign:
“Rick has waged a remarkable campaign. His success is a testament to his tenacity and the power of conservative principles.

“I am committed to staying in this race all the way to Tampa so that the conservative movement has a real choice. I humbly ask Senator Santorum’s supporters to visit Newt.org to review my conservative record and join us as we bring these values to Tampa. We know well that only a conservative can protect life, defend the Constitution, restore jobs and growth and return to a balanced budget.""

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