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Despite riding wave of debates, Gingrich downplays next one

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Newt Gingrich waits to be introduced for a speech on the floor of the Oklahoma House of Representatives in Oklahoma City, Okla., Tuesday morning.

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. -- Newt Gingrich has one last debate before Super Tuesday -- the day that could effectively end his presidential hopes if he has a poor showing in the 11 states that vote March 6. (Gingrich is on only 10 of those ballots.)

But Gingrich, who when strapped for cash rode a wave of debates to the top of the polls, doesn’t seem to be putting any more emphasis on this debate, which takes place Wednesday evening in Mesa, Ariz.

"Every debate is important," the former House speaker told members of his traveling press corps as he left the Oklahoma State House, noting that this debate is not more important than any others.

Despite the debate being tomorrow night, the former speaker contended the debate was "too far away" to know how he would prepare for it. Though, as of right now, according to the campaign, Gingrich will have no public events on debate day -- an unusual schedule for the candidate.

Gingrich has had multiple events on past debate days and sometimes even watches movies -- namely Anchorman and Bridesmaids -- to prepare.

Gingrich’s two debate performances in South Carolina are partially credited with his come-from-behind win in the Palmetto State, but his less-than-stellar performances in Florida prevented him from gaining momentum in the Sunshine State primary.

While he seems to be downplaying Wednesday night’s debate with Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, and Ron Paul, Gingrich needs a strong showing to try and push his way back into the spotlight and win Georgia, among other states, early next month.

"See you in Arizona," Gingrich repeated with a smile to the press as he walked toward his campaign bus following his last public event before the debate.