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Questions swirl around Gingrich's divorce

December 26, 2011 12:20:19 AM PST
The GOP presidential race is moving into high gear in the final week of campaigning before the Iowa caucuses.

New questions are being raised about former House Speaker Newt Gingrich's explanation of his divorce from his first wife.

Gingrich filed for divorce from his wife, Jackie, after 18 years of marriage, and after he began dating a congressional aide, who became his second wife.

Gingrich's website and his campaign spokesman claim that Jackie requested the divorce.

However, according to CNN, which tracked down the divorce papers, Jackie Battley Gingrich told the court: "She has adequate and ample grounds for divorce, but she does not desire one at this time."

Gerald Johnson, a childhood friend of the couple, agrees.

"I didn't get the impression that she was willing to end the marriage," said Johnson.

The major candidates will be traveling across Iowa this week on bus tours.

According to recent polls, Gingrich, Mitt Romney and Ron Paul are all bunched near the top.

Paul seems to have momentum, but he is also facing questions about his controversial newsletters from the 1980s and 1990s containing racist, anti-Semitic and anti-gay remarks.

Only Romney and Paul will be on the ballot in Virginia. Gingrich failed to qualify this past weekend in his home state.

Jon Huntsman is bypassing Iowa this week to concentrate on New Hampshire, where Romney currently has a double-digit lead.

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