NASHUA, N.H. -- Newt Gingrich declared that the congressional "Super Committee's collapse" would be "good for America."
"I think it's going to fail,” Gingrich said at a campaign stop at Rivier College. “And I think it should fail, because it's exactly wrong.”
Today is considered the final day for Democrats and Republicans to agree on a plan that would need pass before Thanksgiving in order to avoid automatic spending cuts to Defense and social programs.
"It's not that Washington is inherently gridlocked,” the former Speaker contended. “It is that the current players are behaving in the current way are inherently gridlocked. It's partially president's fault, partially Congress's fault, but it's a mess.”
He added, "They were trying to break out of the mess by being, in my judgment, even dumber -- that is creating a committee of 12 picked by the political leadership to magically get in a room to come up something that 535 couldn't solve. It's profoundly the wrong direction.... It's a major reason I am running for president.”
As for what he would propose if he were in office, Gingrich was unclear. He said he encourages every subcommittee to revisit their budgets and cut spending, and he does not support repealing the Bush tax cuts.
"I'm in favor of not raising any taxes on an economy that has 9% unemployment," he said. "The reason is simple -- we know how to create jobs."
Gingrich, whose campaign team quit on him months ago and was low on resources, has ridden his debate performances -- and benefited from the stumbles of rivals -- to higher poll numbers both nationally and in New Hampshire. Today, he attempted to distinguish himself from the rest of the GOP field and make a general-election argument focused on those debate performances.
"If you stop and ask yourself, 'It's October of 2012, we get to the debates -- who do you want to have debate Obama to draw clarity between the various lies he will be telling and the truth?'” Gingrich said. “And I think most people end up thinking I'm a better debater than my friends are.”
Gingrich also slammed Obama on spending and leadership, calling his administration "a 16-year-old with the first credit-card kind of problem."
On immigration, Gingrich quipped, "FedEx and UPS track 24 million packages…. They allow you to track them at no extra cost. The federal government cannot currently find a million people," he said to laughter. "FedEx and UPS can track packages while they're moving; the federal government can't find people when they're sitting still! My policy is send everybody a package."