Report: Gingrich considers suspending campaign

Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 3:27pm

Newt Gingrich is preparing Tuesday night to reassess his presidential prospects and that includes considering suspending his campaign, CNN has learned.

The Gingrich campaign has come up with a few "what-if" scenarios based on the outcome of Delaware's primary, one of five states holding contests Tuesday.

According to campaign spokesperson R.C. Hammond, options include the unlikely "break-in-the-dam scenario," in which the former House speaker pulls off an upset and defeats presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney in Delaware.

Gingrich trails far behind Mitt Romney in the race, with 141 delegates to Romney's 695 delegates, according to a CNN estimate. Although he has only won primaries in South Carolina and Georgia, Hammond said a Delaware win for Gingrich, "changes the narrative that Romney has wrapped up the nomination."

On Monday the former House speaker acknowledged he would reconsider his White House bid following the results of this week's slate of primaries, particularly Delaware where he has made frequent campaign stops in recent weeks, telling NBC News, "I think we would need to take a deep look at what we are doing."

What appears to be Gingrich's more realistic and likely scenario involves getting "their butts kicked in Delaware," according to the campaign's press secretary. If that happens, Hammond said Gingrich will begin "reassessing his campaign." He told CNN the former speaker will continue to campaign in North Carolina and talk to supporters and donors there and nationwide.

In the coming days Gingrich will "assess whether or not there is a path forward." Hammond said the path forward, which includes the possibility of suspending his presidential campaign, could occur "in a few days."

Gingrich is realistic about where his campaign is right now, according to Hammond, who added the former speaker doesn't believe staying in the race is damaging the party. He also added his candidate's motivation is "nothing personal against Romney."

If there's any bright light for the cash-strapped Gingrich campaign, it is the fact that the super PAC supporting his candidacy, Winning Our Future, has indicated they have more money to spend on advertising to help Gingrich continue competing in North Carolina, the next primary contest hurdle.

After North Carolina, Gingrich could do well in states like Kentucky and West Virginia. Hammond was realistic their prospects hinged on how much Winning Our Future weighed in, adding that Gingrich could do well in those states "with the right television backing."

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