Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich put the blame on Fox News for Donald Trump’s meteoric rise in the Republican presidential contest, telling the network’s morning news and talk crew that it had “invented” the brash billionaire’s candidacy.

“Donald Trump gets up in the morning, tweets to the entire planet at no cost, picks up the hone, calls you, has a great conversation for about eight minutes—which would have cost him a ton in commercial money—and meanwhile, his opponents are all out there trying to raise the money to run an ad,” Gingrich said Monday morning on Fox & Friends.

Host Brian Kilmeade countered that the frequency of Trump’s appearances was a function of the candidate’s willingness to appear, whereas more mainstream Republicans, like former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, have proven more reticent.

Gingrich fired back: “Look, you could say that Trump is the candidate Fox & Friends invented. He was on your show, I think, more than any other show.”

“Every Monday,” cohost Steve Doocy added.

Watch the full exchange after the jump.

[Disclosure: Gingrich serves as a senior advisor at Dentons, the same law firm for which Tipsheet editor James Richardson serves as managing director. The views expressed here do not necessarily represent the views of Dentons or its clients.]