Gingrich begins Super Tuesday in Gwinnett

Polls in Georgia are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. today.

The former U.S. House speaker asked a subdued business crowd for their votes after explaining how he plans to “fundamentally change” a federal government that stifles innovation.

“I have opponents who in a normal period are adequate but they don’t have anything like the scale change I just described to you,” Gingrich said.

Gingrich has spent much of the past two weeks campaigning through the state he represented for 20 years in Congress, and polls show him with a solid lead in the state. A survey by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution taken late last week showed 38 percent of voters supporting Gingrich, followed by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney at 24 percent, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum at 22 percent and Texas Rep. Ron Paul at 3 percent.

While Georgia appears ready to give Gingrich his second win of the primary season – after his Jan. 21 victory in South Carolina – the outlook beyond is less clear. He is closing the gap in Tennessee and has tried to compete in Oklahoma and Ohio, but Romney and Santorum have dominated the political conversation of late. Ten states in all vote Tuesday.

Gingrich has made clear that if he wins Georgia he will remain in the race, regardless of the outcomes in other states. After a string of dismal showings in February, the primary calendar for March is more promising for him as he does best in the South. Gingrich is campaigning today in Huntsville, Ala., before flying back for his primary night party in Cobb County, a nod to the March 13 Alabama primary. Mississippi also votes that day.

Gingrich said that Romney has only taken the lead thus far by pounding him – and others – with negative ads, recalling how he was outspent by Romney and an allied super PAC in Iowa and Florida, leading to poor showings in those two states.

“Let me tell you, anyone who thinks Romney can out-raise Obama, it ain’t gonna happen,” Gingrich said. “You better be prepared to wage a campaign of ideas this fall because that’s the only way we can beat Obama.”

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