Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich pitched his plan to lower gas prices to a group of 25 people who attended a fundraiser held at the Chattanooga Choo Choo Tuesday morning.
The $1,000 per person fundraiser lasted less than an hour and was held in the hotel's Crystal Room. Before meeting with the group, Gingrich told reporters he would fight to drop gas prices to between $2 and $2.50 were he to be elected president.
"We want America to be free of the Middle East, so no president again ever again bows to a Saudi king," Gingrich said. "… Gas was $1.13 when I was speaker; it was $1.89 when Obama was sworn in. We're not exactly going for a fantasy here; we're going for a pre-Obama price level."
When asked about a recent Vanderbilt University poll that showed Gingrich coming in fourth place among "registered and likely voters in Tennessee," Gingrich said he saw the situation across the state leading up to Super Tuesday as "very fluid."
"I was ahead in Tennessee three weeks ago," he said. "I think after we get done today, people will come bouncing back."
Michael Fillauer, a local businessman who attended the event, said he was still confident that Gingrich could pull out a victory.
"He's gonna win in Tennessee," Fillauer said. "He just has the strength and the ability to lead the country. He's proven himself as speaker of the house, he did a great job in the 90s and he's strong enough to be the president who is going to lead us out of the mess we're in now."
Following the fundraiser, Gingrich heads to North Georgia for campaign events in Dalton and Rome.
Nooga.com will be following this story throughout the day.