March 9th, 2010
11:07 AM ET
5 years ago

Robocalls attack Santorum ahead of Iowa visit

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum is being attacked in an anonymous recorded telephone message hitting some Iowa households Monday afternoon.

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum is being attacked in an anonymous recorded telephone message hitting some Iowa households Monday afternoon.

(CNN) - The jostling for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination is already well underway. Apparently the dirty tricks are, too.

An anonymous recorded telephone message began hitting some Iowa households Monday afternoon attacking former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, a potential presidential candidate, ahead of his Tuesday evening appearance before the influential Iowa Christian Alliance, two Hawkeye State Republicans told CNN.

In the 40-second call, an unidentified female voice blasts Santorum as "a pro-life fraud" because of his past support for former New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman and Republican-turned Democratic Pennsylvania Arlen Specter, both of whom support abortion rights. Whitman, the call claims, was "the abortion promoting governor of New Jersey." Specter is labeled a "radical abortionist."

Santorum, an ardent opponent of abortion rights, campaigned for both lawmakers during his time in the Senate. He has said publicly that he regrets backing then-Republican Specter, who switched to the Democratic Party last year.

The message urges voters to contact Santorum at the conservative Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, where he is a senior fellow, "and ask him to apologize for his longtime support of radical pro-abortion politicians."

It is unclear how many people have received the message, a recording of which was provided to CNN by an Iowa Republican.

Santorum, who is openly talking about a possible White House bid, is the featured speaker at the Iowa Christian's Alliance's 2010 "Spring Kick-off" in Des Moines.

"Senator Santorum will put his record up against anyone when it comes to championing social conservative causes such as leading the fight to ban partial birth abortion," said Virginia Davis, Santorum's spokeswoman.

Transcript and full audio of the call after the jump:

[Unidentified female voice]"As a lifelong advocate of the sanctity of life, I know pro-life frauds when I see one, and Rick Santorum is a pro-life fraud.

In 1997, Santorum campaigned for the abortion-promoting governor of New Jersey, Christine Todd Whitman

Gov. Whitman has deep associations with radical abortion supporting groups, Republicans For Choice and The Republican Majority For Choice.

In fact, Gov. Whitman was an active proponent of partial birth abortion.

In 2004, Sen. Santorum actively campaigned for radical abortionist Sen. Arlen Specter instead of pro-life congressman Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.

Today, Sen. Specter, a left-wing Democrat, is a leading advocate of President Obama's liberal agenda in Washington.

If you don't get a chance to speak with Rick Santorum face to face, please call him at 202 682 1204 and ask him to apologize for his longtime support of radical pro-abortion politicians."


Filed under: Iowa • Rick Santorum
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. Aunt Bea and Opie

    Tax the churchs now.tax the think tanks now.

    March 9, 2010 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  2. Avg Guy in Red State Kansas

    I can't think of ANYBODY I know who is impressed by negative campaigning. The pundits all say negative campaigning works, but, then, that's why they're pundits: They know everything. Right.

    The lack of civility in this country epidemic. The candidate who'll earn my vote is the one who'll focus on ideas and issues and who will brush aside the cheap shots taken by the mangy old mongrels who lurk in the weeds.

    Anybody care to join me?

    March 9, 2010 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  3. Pam from Iowa

    Robocalls should be made illegal.
    Anyone who has anything that resembles intelligence never listens to them anyway.
    As soon as I know it is a recording, I hang up. Doesn't matter who the call is from.
    I hung up on a lot of them in the last election including those from my own party!

    March 9, 2010 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  4. D. Tree

    Calling people like Specter "radical" only shows how far away from the mainstream these right-wing extremists really are. By their definition most of America is "radical" – why don't they take their hateful politics somewhere else if they don't like America!

    March 9, 2010 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  5. richp the poconos

    More progressive socialist democrat attacks, going to be a bad couple of years as the progressives attack any and all that refuse to be assimilated. Bottom line, both parties need to clean out socialists wearing democrat and republican suits.

    March 9, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  6. rosslaw

    A classic case of the right-wing eating its own. Now the pedeophiles, repressed, self-hating gays and " I just do what the voices tell me to do" who make up the great American, ever crazier by the day rightwing are in a race to the bottom, employing Karl Rove sleaze tactics against each other. I think I'm going to cook up some popcorn and enjoy the show.

    March 9, 2010 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  7. Chipster

    Santorum is also a "Tort Reform fraud." He and his wife sued her doctor for a half million dollars for "non-medical" compensation. That's the pain and suffering lawsuit that Santorum wants to cap at $250,000. They were awarded $350,000 and bought a huge mansion in VA where they pretend to be from PA. They received about $100,000 in cyberschool payments for their children from PA although mail delivered to the Penn Hills home is returned as "undeliverable." Santorum even confirmed that there was no furniture in the house.

    What a weasel. (My apology to weasels everywhere.

    March 9, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  8. french canadian that cant vote but has a big mouth

    I love Rick Santorum and his policies.

    March 9, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  9. shucks

    He has about as much chance of being president as Palin. We drove him out of Pennsylvania because he was a thief and a religious kook. Now he wants to be your president? These people really do have delusions of grandeur.

    March 9, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  10. Dumbasrocks [R]s

    I love it when these rightwing baboons come down from the trees and eat their own.

    This is like Hitler vilifying Goebels becasue he didn't murder enough innocent people.

    Rightwingers like Sanorum and the initiator of the phone calls need to be trashed, just like the rest of the rightwing garbage in this country.

    March 9, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  11. gar

    Wait am I reading this story right? Santorum is being accused of being too liberal on abortion? are they kidding? Santorum is a reasonable man – – he appears to be moderate or just a wee bit right of center. That is where the American people are as a whole. He would make an excellent Senator, Governor or President.

    We need to stop believing all of the propaganda and look at his actual voting record and speeches. If you do that most people would be pro- Santorum.

    March 9, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  12. Darth Cheney

    Simply put, you can not be to the right of Rick Santorum without being anything but a fascist.

    March 9, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  13. JT the MO college freshman

    This type of reactionary politics must stop at this moment; we need to focus on issues that matter to our nation; healthcare reform, clean energy independence, financial regulation, and equal rights for the GLBT community. Those are the most influencial issues facing us today, and seeing this happen does not give me good hope about congress being able to think these issues in a neutral, complex standpoint. Saying that, I believe that we need to focus on our economy the most; the economy affects all of these issues I described above in some way, shape, or form.
    I will not accept a future where all there is, is petty arguing and finger pointing at one another. We need to swallow our pride, and start contributing to the problem that all of us had a hand in creating.
    This was due to greed and irresponsibility on everyone who let their party affiliation get in the way of making a sound decision. Through an unbiased point of view, former President Bush did add, with all the calcuations and intrest equations added to the problem, approximentally 7 trillion to our debt; that is not including the Iraq war, which figuring out all the math, cost us 2-3 trillion. If you add all of that up, that totals to at least 10 trillion added to our debt.
    Now, President Obama has to stimulate the economy; since the private sector of our economy lacks money to get it going again, the public sector has to step in and stimulate it. Unfortunately, the cost of stimulating our economy is going to cost a couple trillion; he had two options in front of him.
    1. Add to the debt, while propping up the economy, and trying to get jobs created.
    2. Don't add to the debt, while letting the entire United States economy go under, which really would have put us in a hole.
    Trust me, I am not fond at all of adding to the debt, but to stimulate a weak and shaken economy, something had to stimulate it.
    FDR had to do the same thing with the economy; since the economy was nearly gone back then, he had to spend a large amount to get it going again. While his new deal did help, it did not get us out completely; it took the spending of the New Deal and WW2 to get the economy kickstarted again. While I really do despise war with a passion, I do admit back during the presidency of FDR, WW2 finally got us back on track to having a healthy economy.
    After the economy got kickstarted again back in the lower to mid 1940s, the time came for us to pay the money back it took to get the economy stimulated again.
    The economy right now, appears to be stabilizing, which is a really good sign considering how close we were to collapse just over a year ago. After our economy gets back to good health, it will come again that we are going to have to pay off the debt build up before the recession began, and the debt it is going to take to bring the economy back to health again. When the time comes to pay the debt off, I do admit, it is not going to be pain free. It is probably going to hurt at first, but it has to be done if we are to avert a bigger problem.
    This was not due to one person or group of people; it was due to all of us making poor choices and decisions throughout the period of a couple of decades due to our human nature of greed.
    I think we have been avoiding the unavoidable for too long, and delaying action will not help. We are all going to have to make some sacrifices to reduce our standard of living to ensure a prosperous future for later generations.Think of these questions for yourself: Do you really need that new flat screen TV? Do you really need that new cell phone? Do you really need that new 2010 Mustang? Do you really need that 2 million dollar house? I think those questions can be answered by common sense. We have to remember who we are as Americans, and make the hard, tough sacrifice that will pay off in the future. Take a look at American history; we have gotten out of tough spots by hard work before, and we can do it again with hard work.

    I have some ideas regarding how we can fix our debt/ economic problem, but it is not short term; let me explain:
    What then are attributes of a sustainable economy in the information age?
    1. Populations of humans and other organisms living in harmony with the natural support systems such as air, water, and land (including ecosystems).
    2. An energy policy that does not pollute the atmosphere, cause climatic damage, or present unacceptable risk ( a political or social decision).
    3. A plan for renewalbe resources such as water, forests, grasslands, agricultural lands, solar, wind and fisheries that is produced here in America and will not deplete the resources or damage ecosystems.
    4. A plan for nonrenewable resources such as natural gas and nuclear produced here in America and that does not damage the regional to global environment while ensuring a share of our nonrenewable resources is left to future generations.
    5. A social, legal, and political system that is dedicated to sustainability with a democratic mandate to produce such an economy.
    To make this happen though, in my personal opinion, we have to make some tough, unpopular choices; we have been avoiding them for too long. We need to take responsibility for the debt and economy that all of us contributed to; we need to cut down to our basic needs as a country; Healthcare, Education, basic housing, energy produced here, and basic defense to keep our borders safe. The rest, in my opinion, needs to be cut down if we are to start to tackle our debt that we have built up the past couple of decades; cuts alone would not solve the debt and economic hole we put oursleves in. Someone is going to have to make the very unpopular and not well liked choice; raise taxes on someone.
    If we are to make the necessary reform to our economy to clean energy independence, while cutting our debt at the same time, those tough choices are going to have to be made, in my view. We need to show the world again how great of a country America can be; we need to show them that we can be fiscally responsible, while still achieveing something great and historic.

    March 9, 2010 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  14. Joseph-Ohio

    Abortion is not killing our future, our Government not working together is. Come on Santorum! Can you run on any other issues? Just like a Republican! Run on religion and morals to come across god like to get the vote and then rape Americans of their wealth once elected. I have NEVER met a Republican that has the best interest of the middle class first and formost at heart, and I used to be a Republican!!!!!!!!!!

    March 9, 2010 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  15. lilacluvr

    Santorum apologized for campaigning for Specter because Specter is now a Democrat. But no mention of apologizing for campaigning Whitman – another pro-abortion supporter. Doesn't this make Santorum just another GOP partisan political hypocrit? BTW – Republicans love robocalls when it is to their benefit. What is good for the goose, is good for the gander.

    March 9, 2010 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  16. Mu

    It's the usual route these folks to take on the way to a Fox TV contract. Nothing more or nothing less.

    March 9, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  17. Reny

    I love Repulsivecans turning on each other. I cant wait for the 2012 election primaries to heat up and I hope Palin throughs her stupid hat in the ring. I would love to see her getting shreded.

    March 9, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  18. VernisRobertson

    This Robocalls is stupid and should be band. Don't get it . If you are so much better than your opponent , why spread the lies. Make the American people make the choice.

    March 9, 2010 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  19. Aspen Professor

    Now that is what we like to see - right-wing extremists blasting the moderate Republicans! Keep it up guys! 2012 will begin looking like 2006 and 2008.

    The NO Party in bed with the Team Party, heading for a royal flushing down the toilet of history.

    March 9, 2010 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  20. Everyone's Child

    Oh please let Santorum be the nominee. He will drag down every Republican on the ballot and the Democrats will wind up with permanent super-majorities in the House, the Senate and the White House will be theirs forever.

    March 9, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  21. Larry

    Rick Sanitation is not presidential material. His abject failure as a senator proves that.

    March 9, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  22. Lori in Texas

    Rick Santorum is skeevy. He wants the USA to become like Iran – the President is only a figurehead while the religious actually make the laws. These crazy religious people here in America can keep their theocracy in their own homes – not mine.

    March 9, 2010 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    Dems: "We'd like to help everyone have health insurance, so we've proposed this bill here, which is very long and complicated because, well, health care is 1/6th of the economy and is a very complicated industry"

    GOPers: "It's "big government" and "big brother soshulizms"!!! The Dems all want to control your health care and tell grandma that she can't have any more health care because she can no longer hold a shovel or work in a plant!!!"

    Dems: "Not true. We even got rid of the public option because you pantwetting McCarthyists and some of our own Dems were all bought by the insurance industry"

    GOPers: "Yeah, but you want tax money paying for abortions!!! Health care reform is our opportunity to make it so at least some people can't have abortions!!!!"

    See the hypocrisy? if you don't, you're an f-ing retard Limbaugh robot.

    March 9, 2010 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  24. Not Stupid, Greedy, Selfish, or Arrogant Enough to be a Republican or a Teabagger

    Until voters start to repudiate this sort of conduct from Republicans in general and conservatives in particular, it's going to continue. Starting with Lee Atwater and the infamous "Willie Horton" campaign commercial in 1988, Republicans have continually engaged in mudslinging, record distortion, character assasination, and flat out lying about their opponents in order to get elected. At leat this time they're doing it to one of their own.

    While Santorum, and hopefully a few other right wingers, get an up-close-and-personal lesson about karma, I'll be laughing all the way through election day.

    March 9, 2010 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  25. Stacie

    Specter is a radical abortionist. People honestly pay attention to this extremist garbage???

    March 9, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
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