BEAUFORT, S.C. — Newt Gingrich angrily denied that he asked his second wife for an “open marriage” and denounced the moderator in Thursday night’s Republican presidential debate for raising the issue in the leadoff question.
Gingrich blasted what he called the “destructive, vicious, negative nature of much of the news media.”
Gingrich called the question about his ex-wife’s allegations “as close to despicable as anything as I can imagine.”
He called her claims false.
Gingrich also released his 2010 income tax returns, which showed he owed $613,517 in federal taxes on more $3.1 million in income. They showed he owed roughly 31.6 percent of his adjusted income in taxes, giving about 2 percent to charity.
Two days before the pivotal South Carolina primary, Gingrich’s political and private life were clashing just as new polls showed him rising as he looks to overtake GOP front-runner Mitt Romney in the third state to weigh in on the presidential race. Gingrich has seen his crowds grow in recent days after a strong performance in a debate Monday.
It was unclear how the new revelations from Marianne Gingrich would play in a state where religious and socially conservative voters hold sway.
Equally uncertain was whether Gingrich would get a boost from Perry’s endorsement, given that the Texas governor had little support in the state, and get conservative voters to coalesce behind his candidacy. Complicating Gingrich’s effort is another conservative, Rick Santorum, who threatens to siphon his support.
It was all but certainly intended to provide political cover for Gingrich with evangelicals here ahead of the interview with Marianne Gingrich, her first on television since the divorce from Gingrich in 2000, that ABC News was set to broadcast Thursday night.View Entire Story
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