LAS VEGAS - Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich took to the podium in a Las Vegas honky-tonk bar Friday to slam Mitt Romney.
Gingrich again criticized Romney for his controversial comments about poor people he made to CNN Wednesday.
"If you're a genuine conservative, first of all, you don't say that you don't care about the poor," Gingrich said. "My goal, the exact opposite of Gov. Romney, my goal is not to ignore or forget the poor. My goal is to turn the safety net into a trampoline to allow the poor to rise and be like the rest of us."
Gingrich said Romney's controversial comments about the poor were an "example of what we don't want in a general election candidate."
"So Gov. Romney [was] trying to recover from his boo-boo as the elite media did exactly what Obama will do this fall and kept replaying, 'I don't really care about the poor,' which is, by the way, not a very clever thing for somebody who's very wealthy to say," Gingrich said.
Gingrich also took the opportunity to hit Romney on his connection with Wall Street billionaires, saying "Wall Street isn't Main Street."
"We did not create Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac so rich guys like Mitt Romney and Goldman Sachs could make money," Gingrich said.
Gingrich compared Romney to President Obama several times in his speech, saying the Republican Party did not need to elect an "Obama lite."
Gingrich also compared Romney and Obama on food stamps. Gingrich often calls Obama "the best food stamp president in history" as a part of his usual stump speech. But Friday, Gingrich added Romney into his rhetoric, calling him a "little food stamp."
"We now know from Gov. Romney, he joins President Obama. Obama is big food stamp, he's little food stamp - but they both think food stamps are OK," Gingrich said. "I don't think food stamps are a future for America. They're a necessary bridge back to getting a job and back to being independent of the government."
Gingrich will continue to campaign Friday night at a church service in Las Vegas.