WASHINGTON, D.C. — Running low on cash and falling further behind in the delegate count, Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich will slash about a third of his campaign staff in an effort to stay in the race for as long as possible.
Gingrich staffers confirmed to ABC News that the former House speaker had shaken up the top tiers of his staff, including replacing campaign manager Michael Krull with Vince Haley, a longtime Gingrich advisor.
Gingrich, insists that he is still a viable candidate despite a third-place rank in the delegate count. He has hinged his entire strategy on hoping Mitt Romney is incapable of securing the 1,144 delegates needed to become the nominee, resulting in a contested GOP convention this summer.
Earlier Tuesday in Annapolis, Md., Gingrich told reporters “the money is very tight obviously” and suggested his communications staff would soon announce a series of layoffs.
Those announcements came this evening, on the heels of increased evidence that the campaign is striving to stay relevant and stay fiscally afloat.
In recent days, many of the reporters from the country’s major print publication stopped routinely following Gingrich. And Monday night in Delaware, Gingrich charged supporters $50 to have a photo taken with him.
“Clearly, we are going to have to go on a fairly tight budget to get from here to Tampa,” Gingrich said Tuesday. “But I think we can do it.”
On the stump Gingrich regularly talks about how his campaign was left for dead several times in the past only to resurrect itself. Most dramatically, last June, nearly all his senior staff quit the campaign en masse. It was at that time that Krull, a former advance man and friend of Gingrich’s wife Callista was hired.
Gingrich significantly cut back the number of scheduled campaign events he holds. Currently on his schedule, he only has one event a day for the next three days.