US Republican presidential contender Newt Gingrich has angrily denied a report that he once wanted an open marriage, strongly criticising the US media at the start of a key debate.
Gingrich told CNN's debate host that even raising the issue was as close to despicable as anything he could imagine.
He called the US media destructive, vicious and negative.
The four remaining candidates appeared in a last-ditch debate before Saturday's South Carolina primary.
Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Rick Santorum debated in Charleston after a dramatic day.
As Gingrich gained on Romney in the polls, an ex-wife revealed in an interview he wanted an open marriage.