Spokesman: “Vitriol” against Santorum to blame for expected D.C. loss

posted at 4:00 pm on April 3, 2012 by Tina Korbe

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when Rick Santorum suddenly ceased to be the viable challenger and began instead to be a candidate in denial. Wisconsin is, as Andrew Malcolm put it, Santorum’s “next last chance” and it doesn’t look good for the former Pennsylvania senator. Maryland and D.C., where Santorum didn’t even make the ballot, have never been anything but Romney territory.

The weeks ahead don’t look any more promising for Santorum:

So, we enter a three-week window after today’s action with the volume likely growing from those who care, asking why Ricky doesn’t just give it up. It’s hard, given how determined, committed and focused these candidates must be for so many long days so far from home, to give up emotionally, even though the math is as clear as a sweater vest.

Next on April 24, come five primaries — Connecticut (28), Delaware (17), New York (95), Pennsylvania (72) and Rhode Island (19). Romney’s coming on in Pennsylvania and looks good elsewhere. Santorum regards his home state as a last bastion. But the most recent time he ran there (2006), he lost by an historic 18 points. So, it could also be an Alamo.

The ex-senator says he’s in the fight until Romney gets the necessary 1,144, which is what a stubborn Mike Huckabee said about John McCain’s lead four years ago. And now Huck is playing bass guitar Saturdays on the Fox News Channel.

Santorum says he represents the GOP’s base, which is true if you consider the base is only Very Conservative evangelicals. All of the other parts — Somewhat Conservative evangelicals, women, college educated, suburbanites, et al — have come around to Romney.

Yet, his campaign continues to wage the valiant messaging battle. Spokesman Hogan Gidley today, for example, sought to explain Santorum’s inevitable D.C. loss as the result of something other than the campaign’s own organizational oversight.

“Obviously Wisconsin is going to be a close race, we’re not sure about Maryland or Washington, D.C.,” Gidley said Tuesday on MSNBC. “We expect Mitt Romney to do well in the D.C., area, no shock there, in fact it might even be unanimous — I don’t know that we’ll pick up a single vote in D.C. because of the vitriol D.C. has for a someone like Rick Santorum who wants to shake things up here in Washington.”

Santorum, for his part, has outright said he doesn’t want to answer the dreaded question: Will he exit the race anytime soon?

“I’m not talking about this anymore,” Rick Santorum said [in West Bend, Wis.] Sunday outside the Riverside Brewery and Restaurant before a gaggle of cameras and reporters. “We’re just focused on doing well here in Wisconsin.”

What Santorum doesn’t want to talk about is what so many others want to talk about, which is how long he will stay in the contest for the Republican presidential nomination. He is confronted by that question at almost every stop along the campaign trail and in every television interview he gives. He’s tired of it.

“I think I’ve answered the question I’m going to answer,” he says.

He’s earned the right to continue in the race, to compete in his home state of Pennsylvania, to explore every last avenue that might lead to the nomination. As improbable as it has been from the beginning, it is still not impossible.

No matter what happens, though, his campaign has been — for those of us who’ve watched and identified with someone who admittedly looks to his faith first and to his political ideology second — an inspiration. His heartfelt determination, his unprompted speeches, his outspoken opinions, his shining family — they’ve reminded us that authenticity is always relevant and that no one gets anywhere worth going by attempting to be something other than who and what he is. Rick Santorum has been — from the first day of his campaign to this — Rick Santorum. In politics, a field in which strategists recreate candidates in the image of electability, that might just be the most impressive feat of all.


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Comment pages: 1 2

I’d hold my nose and vote for Rick. I’d happily vote for Romney. I don’t see how anybody that understands the threat of Obama could sit this one out for any reason and still sleep at night. It’s the fight of our lifetimes.

Swerve22 on April 3, 2012 at 7:08 PM

At least we can agree on the last part of that (though I won’t be exactly cheerful come November regardless of candidate). This country can’t and won’t survive another 4 years of Obama.

My fear is whether it is Santorum or Romney, there’s going to be too many who can’t accept that to evict Obama from the White House.

The other key is to not just get a Republican majority in the Senate, but a conservative Republican one. We can’t afford any more Medicare Part Ds or NCLBs (heck, we can’t afford the originals either).

Steve Eggleston on April 3, 2012 at 7:28 PM

By that standard so did Mitt who stayed in further into the primary in 08. After more States had voted.

Steveangell on April 3, 2012 at 7:25 PM

We’re at roughly the same delegate point we were at on February 19, 2008, Wisconsin’s (meaningless) primary date that cycle.

When do I think this should end? When someone gets to 1,144 or when rhe last state votes, whichever comes first.

Steve Eggleston on April 3, 2012 at 7:40 PM

At least we can agree on the last part of that (though I won’t be exactly cheerful come November regardless of candidate). This country can’t and won’t survive another 4 years of Obama.

My fear is whether it is Santorum or Romney, there’s going to be too many who can’t accept that to evict Obama from the White House.

The other key is to not just get a Republican majority in the Senate, but a conservative Republican one. We can’t afford any more Medicare Part Ds or NCLBs (heck, we can’t afford the originals either).

Steve Eggleston on April 3, 2012 at 7:28
PM

This comment contradicts all of your previous comments. If you aren’t prepared to get behind Mitt now, then you are willing to risk Obama being re-elected in order to make a statement. No one will remember your statement 8 trillion dollars from now. Moronic,

Basilsbest on April 3, 2012 at 7:51 PM

This comment contradicts all of your previous comments. If you aren’t prepared to get behind Mitt now, then you are willing to risk Obama being re-elected in order to make a statement. No one will remember your statement 8 trillion dollars from now. Moronic,

Basilsbest on April 3, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Tell me again how successful President McCain was in locking up the nomination at this point while having the Democrats drag theirs out until June? Oh, that’s right, he’s still Senator McCain.

Steve Eggleston on April 3, 2012 at 7:53 PM

Do you have the Michigan numbers by municipality or precinct? The best the Michigan Secretary of State has is by county.

Steve Eggleston on April 3, 2012 at 6:07 PM

Currently, Michigan only releases general election results at the precinct level. But if you use the Google Election results map and zoom in to the point where the underlying map starts to show townships, you can relate the results to the precinct results for the general election, which are useful in showing where Republican general election votes come from in a given county on a percentage basis. It is not illogical to infer that primary voters are (within a reasonable margin of error) distributed on a similar basis.

HTL on April 3, 2012 at 8:03 PM

What you said of Senator Santorum at the end was true at one time. Now, however, his campaign is simply the campaign of a sore loser. It is not reflecting well on him.

Jeff A on April 4, 2012 at 6:21 AM

No matter what happens, though, his campaign has been — for those of us who’ve watched and identified with someone who admittedly looks to his faith first and to his political ideology second — an inspiration. His heartfelt determination, his unprompted speeches, his outspoken opinions, his shining family — they’ve reminded us that authenticity is always relevant and that no one gets anywhere worth going by attempting to be something other than who and what he is. Rick Santorum has been — from the first day of his campaign to this — Rick Santorum. In politics, a field in which strategists recreate candidates in the image of electability, that might just be the most impressive feat of all.

What a bunch of tripe, Tina.

Authentic? Are we talking about the same Rick Santorum here? The one who keeps telling us how he is the “true conservative”?

That last sentence especially is just garbage. There is no doubt it took some political strategists quite a bit of effort to repaint a Senator who voted for Medicare Part D, NCLB, every budget and borrowing limit that crossed his desk, and against anything remotely related to right-to-work as a “true conservative”. Then those strategists had to whip up another bucket of paint for Rick to cover over his repeated discussions of how he loves him some big government as long as they are fighting for his version of moral righteousness, hates him some libertarians, and really hates him some right to privacy. yeah, there’s some “true conserative” for you.

“Authentic”, my butt!

gravityman on April 4, 2012 at 11:11 AM

Comment pages: 1 2