Endorsements might not matter much in the grand scheme of things (how many of you change your minds based on an endorsement?), but, cumulatively, they do say something about a candidate’s ability to campaign effectively and about the kind of supporters a candidate attracts.

Then, too, endorsements sometimes have the opposite of their intended effect. Case in point: Some Republican voters have said they would reconsider a candidate if Donald Trump endorsed that candidate. For that matter, does anybody actually like Mitt Romney better because John McCain endorsed him?

In advance of New Hampshire, both Rick Santorum and Jon Huntsman have picked up relatively notable endorsements. What does each say about Santorum’s and Huntsman’s chances in the Granite State?

First, Santorum’s new supporter:

A source close to the presidential campaign of Rick Santorum tells ABC News that the former Pennsylvania senator will pick up the endorsement of Christian conservative activist Gary Bauer on Sunday.

Bauer ran for president himself in 2000, and is part of the group of conservative leaders trying to figure out around which candidate the movement should coalesce so as to stop Mitt Romney from grabbing plurality wins all the way to the nomination, with conservatives like Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry and Ron Paul splitting the non-Romney vote.

Given Gary Bauer’s blatant social conservative credentials, this likely doesn’t help Santorum much in moderate New Hampshire — but it is a nice little sign that Santorum’s perceived viability as a challenger to Romney continues to mount. The newest objections to Santorum center around his supposed religiously-motivated big-government conservatism and this endorsement might just give added credence to those objections, but, at the same time, Santorum’s social conservatism won’t hurt him in South Carolina, where, actually, Mitt Romney is now trying to make the case that he is also a faith-based candidate. Overall, the endorsement just adds to the image Santorum has been building: He’s a “holistic” candidate — a full-spectrum conservative — who actually stands a chance to beat Romney, not necessarily by rising dramatically in New Hampshire, but by competing everywhere and doing exceptionally well in states like Iowa and South Carolina.

Next, Huntsman’s new backer:

GOP presidential candidate Jon Huntsman will pick up his first congressional endorsement in the final days before the New Hampshire primary, CNN has learned.

Rep. Richard Hanna, a first-term Republican congressman from New York, has decided to back Huntsman, two sources said Saturday. …

The aide said Hanna came to support Huntsman in part because of the candidate’s push for better education in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.

However, the two Republicans also share some similarities in their independent approach to party orthodoxy. In Congress, Hanna is a member of both the conservative Republican Study Committee and a caucus that promotes equality for gays and lesbians.

This says nothing about Huntsman so much as it says that he hasn’t yet had support from a single member of Congress. Perhaps it will make some kind of difference among Hanna’s constituents or in New Hampshire, the one state in which Huntsman is expected to do well, but, overall, it’s just another indication of Huntsman’s barely-above-an-asterisk national polling throughout the campaigns.