From The Statesman:
Speaking at a forum put on by the Austin Tea Party Patriots, Gingrich was asked about his plans, as the crowd chanted, 'Newt. Newt.' Gingrich ignored the question and redirected his answer to talk about the competence of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Rep. John Boehner, the House minority leader.
Gingrich challenged the conservative crowd to continue advocating for small government and free market values. 'You are serving your country as a citizen when you get involved,' he told the often cheering and applauding group, which was estimated by organizers to be about 450 people strong.
Gingrich said he signed [the Contract from America] 'as a tea partier.'
After the event, [Tea Party Patriots organizer Greg Holloway] said: 'The people seemed energized, interested.'
Newt's 527, American Solutions, raised 2.7 million dollars -- "almost as much as the groups headed by his prospective rivals for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee, brought in combined. [Though, as the website points out, Newt's group has fewer restrictions on raising money.]
Gingrich, the former House speaker, has used his committee, American Solutions for Winning the Future, to pay political staff and consultants, build its email list, fundraise and travel the country. Those activities are considered necessary to lay the foundation for a presidential bid, and are similar to how Minnesota Gov. Pawlenty, and former Govs. Romney of Massachusetts, Palin of Alaska and Huckabee of Arkansas have used their committees.
“I see a massive acceleration on the fundraising side,” [Chief Operating Officer Dan Varroney] said, rejecting the premise that American Solutions is geared towards positioning Gingrich for a 2012 presidential run. “Not at all,” he said. “Our focus is clear cut: to save America.”
From the Independent Voter Network:
Reflecting on the 1942 Democratically-controlled Congress that created what he termed 'an anti-appropriations committee, Gingrich claimed that 'a substantial number of New Deal agencies were abolished by the actions of that committee.'
“You can’t govern by saying no,” [Gingrich] said. “Offer a dramatically better set of solutions principled based on conservatism...but solutions...not just ideologies. And all of a sudden people look up and you have an argument.”