After anti-Mormon statement publicized, Gingrich aide goes

A recent Gingrich campaign hire in Iowa is out, after his remarks about Mormonism were publicized on TheIowaRepublican.com. 

“There is a national pastor who is very much on the anti-Mitt Romney bandwagon,” Craig Bergman said. “A lot of the evangelicals believe God would give us four more years of Obama just for the opportunity to expose the cult of Mormon…There’s a thousand pastors ready to do that.”

Below read this morning’s Gingrich edict to his people (do not initiate attacks on the GOP competition), followed by the statement this evening regarding Craig Bergman.

Released at 8:36 a.m. Tuesday:

Atlanta, GA – Following up on a promise he made during a town hall in Windham, NH on Monday, Newt Gingrich released the following letter today sent to his supporters and staff:

December 13, 2011

Dear supporters and staff,

Since I announced my candidacy for President of the United States, I have made it clear that I intended to run a positive, solutions-based campaign. There is not doubt, these are difficult times for our country. The American people deserve a respectful and constructive campaign that focuses on a vision for rebuilding the country we love.

It is critical the Republican nominee emerge from this primary campaign un-bloodied, so that he or she can make the case against President Obama from a position of strength.

For these reasons I have refrained from launching attacks on my Republican opponents, though I have reserved the right to respond when my record has been distorted. On Monday this occurred when Governor Romney and I engaged in what in diplomatic circles is called “a frank exchange” over our respective records in the private sector. That same day, however, Mr. Romney announced, “I’m not going to say outrageous things that can be used to hang [a GOP opponent] down the road.” I agree wholeheartedly with this statement. So let us hope that from this point forward we can devote our energies to real issues, such as discussing our plans for our nation’s economic recovery and helping to create millions of new jobs for the American people.

I also want to reiterate to each of you what I have said from the beginning of our campaign, and most recently last Saturday in Iowa: We will run a positive campaign focused on our country’s future. We will not be running any negative advertising. With Ronald Reagan’s eleventh commandment in mind, we will ask our supporters not to contribute to any so-called SuperPAC that runs negative ads against any other Republican contender and we will discourage ad hominem attacks on our fellow Republicans.

Therefore, I am instructing all members of my campaign staff and respectfully urge anyone acting as a surrogate for our campaign to avoid initiating attacks on other Republican candidates. It is my hope that my Republican opponents will join me in this commitment.

Running a positive solutions-based campaign is the only way to guarantee President Obama is not reelected.

Thank you as always for your support and enthusiasm.

Sincerely,

Newt Gingrich

Released at 5:57 p.m. on Tuesday:

Arlington, VA – Campaign spokesman R.C. Hammond released the following statement today:

Craig Bergman agreed to step away from his role with Newt 2012 today.  He made a comment to a focus group prior to becoming an employee that is inconsistent with Newt 2012’s pledge to run a positive and solutions orientated campaign.  

Bergman worked on Ron Paul’s Iowa campaign last cycle.

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.