Newt Gingrich’s campaign team resigns en masse

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Key members of Republican Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign team resigned in protest on Thursday in a devastating blow to his 2012 hopes.

Rick Tyler, who resigned as Gingrich’s spokesman, cited “a difference of opinion on how to move forward” as the reason why he, campaign manager Rob Johnson, senior strategist Dave Carney and leaders of Gingrich’s operations in New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina and Georgia resigned.

Gingrich said in a Facebook posting that he was still in the race.

“I am committed to running the substantive, solutions-oriented campaign I set out to run earlier this spring,” he said. “The campaign begins anew Sunday in Los Angeles.”

The abrupt move came as Gingrich, the former speaker of the House of Representatives, faced questions about his commitment to the campaign. Shortly after launching his 2012 campaign last month, he went on a two-week vacation with his third wife, Callista.

Tyler, a long-time fixture at Gingrich’s side, said there were questions about “mostly a time commitment,” declining to comment further.