For Santorum, the fight goes on

When Santorum entered the fray for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, he drew that sword and threw away the scabbard. The stakes could not, he thought, be higher, so he was in it for the long haul, which ended with the April 3 Wisconsin primary. Now the former senator from Pennsylvania, who wound up being the last man standing between Mitt Romney and the nomination, probably needs a new scabbard to toss aside.

With disarmingly cheerful ferocity, he relishes combat in what he calls “a two-front civil war” within the GOP. The party is, he says, in danger of becoming “a one-legged stool.” The “Eastern establishment types” want to saw off the cultural conservatism leg, concentrating on economic issues. The rising libertarian faction, exemplified by Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, wants to saw off the strong foreign policy leg. Furthermore, Santorum says, “Americans are not ready for a dramatic withdrawal of government from their lives” of the sort many tea party types advocate.

This self-described “blue-collar Republican” insists, “We are not the anti-government party.” Government has a role in the creation of jobs for the many “who are not going to college.”