The first sign that Palin would ride to Gingrich’s rescue was a radio interview with Sean Hannity right before ABC aired its interview with his ex-wife, Marianne Gingrich, in which she claimed the former speaker wanted an open marriage.
“Good call, media,” she quipped.
Palin again rose to Gingrich’s defense after New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie — a Romney surrogate — criticized Gingrich on “Meet the Press” following Gingrich’s impressive South Carolina win.
After Christie dubbed Gingrich an “embarrassment” to the Republican Party, Palin warned Christie not to get his “panties in a wad.”
“You know, sometimes, if your candidate loses in just one step along this path, as was the case when Romney lost to Newt the other night — and, of course, Romney is Chris Christie’s guy — well, you kind of get your panties in a wad, and you may say things that you regret later. And I think that that’s what Chris Christie did.”
She took it a step farther, saying the New Jersey governor, who has made his name as an in-your-face politician that frequently says eyebrow-raising things, demonstrated a “lack of self-discipline.”
“Poor Chris. This was a rookie mistake. He played right into the media’s hands,” Palin said on Fox Business Network on Monday. “The host had asked Chris, ‘Does Newt embarrass the party?’ I think he asked him twice, and there, Chris played right into it.”
After Gingrich trounced Romney in South Carolina, Palin was there again to trumpet her candidate and call him the new “front-runner” in the presidential race. She praised Texas Gov. Rick Perry for dropping out of the race and throwing his support behind Gingrich.
“I think what Rick Perry having dropped out and that patriot having done well for the front-runner, whom I will call Newt Gingrich now, being the front-runner, having endorsed him, was a good smart move,” Palin said on Fox News after the results rolled in. “He kind of took one for the team there, the conservative team, when he dropped out.”
Palin quipped: “I don’t know, do political pundits back there in the Beltway feign surprise, or are you really surprised that Newt Gingrich did as well as he did?”