Mitt the Marauder
As Newt Gingrich began slipping in the GOP presidential primary polls in January, he sharpened his attacks on his main rival, Mitt Romney. But rather than slamming his governing philosophy (or lack thereof), Gingrich went after the heart of Romney's campaign: his career running the private equity firm Bain Capital. Meanwhile, Winning Our Future, a well-funded pro-Gingrich super PAC, released When Mitt Romney Came to Town, a 28-minute documentary portraying Romney as a monster who made a fortune from mass firings while running a firm built on "vulture capitalism."
It was an unusual attack from the left for Gingrich. And it got a lot wrong, including pinning one set of layoffs on Romney despite the fact that Bain didn't own the relevant company at the time. Eventually Gingrich tried to distance himself from the movie's charges, calling for its producers to edit it or "pull it off the air and off the Internet entirely." It's still there. —Peter Suderman