2012 ELECTION

Gingrich gets infusion of cash

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WASHINGTON (AP) - The Newt Gingrich campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, fresh off a stunning surge and upset victory over Mitt Romney, said Monday that the candidate had raised more than a million dollars in just hours - money that is much needed as the primary battle moves into Florida.

The former speaker of the House of Representatives ravaged the sense of inevitability surrounding Romney's second run for the nomination, with a remarkable 12-percentage point defeat of the former Massachusetts governor in Saturday's South Carolina primary election.

But the next contest, in the far larger and more diverse state of Florida on Jan. 31, will require huge spending on television advertising and Gingrich so far has been underfunded.

Gingrich sudden rise of fortunes has relied on the free media attention he has gained through stellar televised debate performances, particularly the one last Thursday in South Carolina.

He roundly attacked what he termed the "elite" media and political class, then went on to trounce the patrician Romney, a former venture capitalist whose wealth is estimated at between $170 million and $250 million.

Hours before another debate Monday night, Gingrich took pleasure in the discomfort he is causing among the Republican establishment that backs Romney.

"I think you're going to see the establishment go crazy in the next week or two," he said Monday morning on ABC television.

Gingrich moves toward the Florida primary vote claiming that he, not Romney, is the candidate best able to deny President Barack Obama a second term in the White House in the November election.

Obama is vulnerable this year over his handling of the slow U.S. economic recovery from the Great Recession, the deepest economic downturn since the 1930s depression.

Obama will have a high-profile chance to make his case for a second term Tuesday night, when he makes his annual State of the Union speech.

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