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Gingrich Counters Romney With $10 Bet

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Newt Gingrich jabbed Monday at Mitt Romney's $10,000 debate bet with a $10 bet of his own, as the former House speaker challenged Romney to give back money he earned from "bankrupting companies and laying off employees."

Gingrich's comment referred to Romney's work at private investment firm Bain Capital, and poked at Romney's bizarre bet with Rick Perry about health care mandate details in the former Massachusetts governor's book, No Apology.

"If Gov. Romney would like to give back all the money he's earned from bankrupting companies and laying off employees over his years at Bain, then I would be glad to then listen to him," Gingrich told reporters Monday. "And I'll bet you $10, not $10,000, that he won't take the offer."

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Gingrich said he didn't imagine Perry could cover the $10,000 bet, because the Texas governor has been a public servant his whole career.

Romney told Fox News on Monday that the bet was meant as an exaggeration similar to when someone says, "I'll bet you a million bucks."

Fierce Romney-opponent Jon Huntsman had his campaign release a statement saying it believed Romney would have lost his $10,000 bet.

"It is clear that Mitt Romney once touted 'Romneycare' as a 'national model' before he changed his mind and his book," said Tim Miller, Huntsman's spokesman. "The press releases titled ''A History of Conservative Health Care Reform' and 'Romney Vision' tout his Massachusetts health care plan's 'personal responsibility principle' (read: mandate) and highlighted the plan as a 'national model that would dramatically expand access to health care.'"

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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