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Newt: OWS Protesters Have A "Touch Of Anarchism In Them"

Unclear whether they still need to take a bath.

Posted on January 9, 2012, at 9:23 p.m. ET

Win McNamee / Getty Images

Newt Gingrich made a distinction tonight between Ron Paul's sometimes-raucous young supporters and the left-wing Occupy protesters who -- he said -- have a "touch of anarchism" in the.

Fox News's Sean Hannity asked Gingrich why he left an event that had gotten a visit from occupiers and Ron Paul supporters. Gingrich answered, "I’ve generally found that the Ron Paul people, while they’re sometimes noisy, they’re pretty civil and pretty decent."

He continued, "But some of the Occupy Wall Street people frankly have a touch of anarchism in them. I think ultimately the society is going to have to say there are limits to those kind of folks blocking people from having their right to free speech. We can’t be held hostage by those kinds of people."

This isn't the first time Gingrich has directly addressed the Occupy movement. In November, he told protesters to "Go get a job right after you take a bath."

However, some observers thought that Gingrich was channeling the ethos of Occupy today when he criticized Mitt Romney's business practices.

"You have to ask the question, is capitalism really about the ability of a handful of rich people to manipulate the lives of thousands of people and then walk off with the money?” he said to reporters at an energy company in Manchester, New Hampshire.