Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich started Thursday's Iowa campaigning with a stop in Sioux City at The Coffee Works. Only about a dozen customers were there, but he was questioned critically by one about his comments on reforming the federal judiciary.
Linda Santi told Gingrich she didn't appreciate him "politicizing" the Iowa Supreme Court's 2009 decision that found unconstitutional a state law banning gay marriage. Santi said the decision was in accordance with the state constitution. Gingrich ended the conversation with: "We'll have to agree to disagree."
Across Iowa, Gingrich has been stressing his economic experience, calling himself a "supply-side conservative" who worked with Ronald Reagan in the 1980's and again as House speaker in the 1990's to revive the economy.
He keeps telling audiences how thrilled he is to campaign with economist Arthur Laffer, although it's not clear how many in his audiences have any idea who Laffer is (he's a former adviser to President Reagan who has an economic theory — the "Laffer Curve" — to his name).
Speaking to reporters Thursday, Gingrich said he's "totally focused on Iowa" and not thinking about the ensuing primary in New Hampshire.
Gingrich said if he finishes fourth in Iowa, he's definitely continuing his campaign.
A Time/CNN poll out on Wednesday showed Gingrich down to 14 percent support among likely Republican caucus-goers in Iowa, a state he once lead, trailing Romney, Texas Rep. Ron Paul and now even former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.
Also Wednesday, Gingrich's campaign announced a $500,000 ad buy for the closing week in Iowa. But the fact remains that Gingrich has been outspent and is trying to regain his momentum one campaign event at a time.
On Thursday, Gingrich was continuing his bus tour of the state with stops scheduled in Storm Lake, Denison and Carroll.