Prior House Speaker Newt Gingrich taking the stage at a gathering for the Republican Jewish Coalition in Del Ray, Florida on Friday afternoon, his spokesman, R.C. Hammond, confronted Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Utah Republican and Mitt Romney supporter (who was also with Romney supporter and conservative movement leader Bay Buchanan) for attending the Gingrich event.
Hammond took the Utah Republican to task for “following” Mr. Gingrich to his campaign events.
“Speaker Gingrich routinely has said he would follow the president from place to place. It’s a good idea. We’re going to be very respectful,” said Mr. Chafetz to Mr. Hammond.
“So what you’re saying is Newt Gingrich should be president and you’re willing to follow him from place to place,” Hammond shot back.
“No,” said Chaffetz. Mr. Hammond later sarcastically offered a seat on the charter plane to Tampa and asked if Rep. Chaffetz would be interested in phone banking for the Gingrich campaign in Utah.
Chaffetz who seemed taken aback by the questions Mr. Hammond was asking him but defended his actions, saying:
“In this age of communication, I just think it’s smart to offer perspective from the other candidate, in this case, Mitt Romney. I think that’s smart politics. I’m not trying to be disruptive. I’m very respectful,” he said. “I don’t want to get in the way, but the media is moving very quickly and putting things out on the internet instantly. I think it’s smart to provide perspective as swiftly as possible.”
“It was a little unprofessional and they have the tendency to become a little bit unhinged but it is what it is,” Chaffetz added. “I just try to be as respectful as I can.”