August 21st, 2010
10:31 AM ET
4 years ago

2012 Watch: Santorum in New Hampshire following Iowa visit

Manchester, New Hampshire (CNN) - Just days after wrapping up a three-day swing through Iowa, former Republican Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania is in the state that holds the nation's first presidential primary.

The possible GOP presidential candidate will attend a fundraising event Saturday for a New Hampshire Republican state senate candidate and will serve as the keynote speaker at the Manchester Republicans Candidate Fair, according to a spokeswoman for Santorum's political action committee. This is the conservative former senator's second trip to the Granite State this year.

During his three days in Iowa, which was Santorum's third trip to the state this cycle, the Pennsylvania Republican campaigned for state GOP candidates, held receptions to meet with Iowa voters, and stopped by the Iowa State Fair, a must do event for any White House hopeful. The Iowa caucuses kick off the presidential primary season.

"I sort of feel in some respects I'm being pulled along in this," Santorum told the Des Moines Register on Wednesday. "I'm still seriously going through this process. And at this point I'm very encouraged by everything that's happening."

Santorum added that "there seems to be support on the ground at least to consider this. The response has been surprisingly positive."

Last month Santorum met privately with several of his former Capitol Hill staffers to pitch the idea of a presidential bid in 2012. According to GOP sources familiar with the meeting, which took place in Washington, Santorum conveyed his seriousness about a possible campaign and solicited his former aides for advice.

The former two-term senator lost his 2006 re-election bid by 18 points. If he decides to make a bid for the presidency, he could face a potentially crowded field of candidates, including some better funded opponents with larger national political operations.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation national poll released last week indicated that Santorum was the pick of two percent of Republican voters when it comes to their choice for their party's next presidential nominee. Santorum was last among a list of potential GOP White House hopefuls listed in the survey.

But due in part to his strong opposition to abortion rights, Santorum is popular with many socially conservative voters, who have an influential role in the GOP primary process.

–CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • New Hampshire • Rick Santorum
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Facts are not fair to the GOP

    Santorum is out spreading the Fox republican agenda for the November elections: stir up hate against muslims, hispanics, unions, teachers, policemen, firemen, nurses and the middle class, as well as eliminate social security and medicare. The Fox crowd also wants to change the first, tenth, and fourteenth amendments to the constitution.

    As president, Santorum will make sure health reform is eliminated, Wall Street reform is eliminated, and big oil is deregulated.

    August 21, 2010 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  2. Facts are not fair to the GOP

    Republicans are not fiscal conservatives, they are fiscal con men.

    August 21, 2010 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  3. GI Joe

    After the nation-destroying shenanigans pulled by the republicans at all levels for the past 19 months, I wouldn't vote for Jesus Christ himself if he came back as a republican.

    Won't have to worry about that, tho, as Jesus was very much a socialist – all humans equal – and would have been a liberal – take care of those who are not endowed by their father's wealthy gods.

    August 21, 2010 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  4. Jenn

    As a Pennsylvania voter (Ind.) all I can say is "Santorum is creepy and must be stopped".

    August 21, 2010 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  5. Facts are not fair to the GOP

    Did you notice that republicans have not learned their lesson and want to return to the pre emptive Bush Doctrine of foreign diplomacy?

    August 21, 2010 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  6. Keith in Austin

    The groundswell of support for the principles of Conservatism Santorum feels in Iowa, will be a massive tidalwave across America this November!

    Meanwhile, Queen Nancy wants to investigate the 70 percent of Americans opposing the WTC mosque, congressional Democrats are losing election battles for a multitude of seats, skyrocking unemployment,blaming Bush for their dispicable record while the O Bozo clan vacations again with the
    Elite in Martha's Vinyard!

    August 21, 2010 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  7. A Former Pennsylvania Citizen

    Does this nut actually think that he could be elected President of the United States? He is as wacky and unaccomplished as the Sarah, "I Quit", Palin.

    It is a waste of good money for anyone to donate to Rick Santorum. The DNC I gusess should begin to collect some of the hard evidence, from Ricky's own mouth, that will demonstrate to the American people just how out of touch Ricky is.

    August 21, 2010 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  8. rdepontb

    Rick,
    So, you _really_ CANNOT find a real job at all, can you? No consulting, no karaoke, no house painting. So,, you think, why not live off the taxpayer? How to do it without having to show up at the unemployment office to collect a check?

    This is the worst kind of candidate. Ever. Leave us alone, Rick.

    August 21, 2010 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  9. Keith in Austin

    @GI Joe: Your comment about Jesus Christ prove your stupidity and that YOU are a complete idiot! Does the G I stand for Great Imposter? Reading your pathetic blogs over the last few months, the only uniform you've likely ever worn is an orange jumpsuit! STFU and stop your whining for a change-loser!

    August 21, 2010 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  10. tcaros

    Rick Santorum was Bush's boy. Pennsylvanians were sick him. He's a real tool.

    He's an ignorant and proselytizing hypocrite. He's smarter than Bush (doesn't take much) and we kicked him out of the Senate in PA.

    August 21, 2010 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  11. roro

    God help us if this nut runs for any public office. Pennsylvania got rid of him. Why would anyone else want him?

    August 21, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  12. tcaros

    The Republicans are a decietful bunch of hypocrites and bigots.

    Anyone who despises the corporate takeover of our democracy (started under the Bush's) should vote out any Republican this fall.

    August 21, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  13. tcaros

    He's crazy like Palin. That's why we threw him out of PA.
    We elected a Democrat, Bob Casey, and PA is better for it.

    Don't help or support this tool.

    August 21, 2010 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  14. Facts are not fair to the GOP

    It looks like Keith got kicked out of his parent's basement, he is feisty today.

    August 21, 2010 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  15. craig Startt

    Hi,
    Why wouldn't Rick Santorum go to Iowa and N. Hampshire? He doesn't have a job and he's carrying his resume around to see if anybody is interested. Just what he does is, of course, is the problem. Lawyer ? Got lot's of those . Businessman ? Little indication of that. Ex Senator ? Lot's of those around and soon to be a lot more.
    So....what to do with your spare time and " OPM " ( Other people's money ) ? Why not........travel around and look for work?

    August 21, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  16. diridi

    just no listening to Republican thugs, who messed this nation, from Reagan, to Bush....just vote for Democrats....God bless the nation, USA!!!!

    August 21, 2010 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  17. Liz the First

    Well, so much for supporting our troops and veterans. Keith in Austin just showed the rethug attitude towards the people who serve in uniform. if they don't agree with him they have no right to speak. and btw, Keith, he's right! Jesus was a Liberal. and if He did come back today, you and your crowd would be the ones he would have to save. every repug stand is directly opposed to what Jesus came to teach us.

    August 21, 2010 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  18. quinn

    Rick Santorum is a right wing religious fundamentalist extremist leaping right out of the 14th century. Talk about being out of touch.

    August 21, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  19. DENNA

    Yawn, just another Conservatives vying to finish ruining this country. Hey DNC, knock off the ad about George Bush. The Republicans have given you enough damaging sound bites to create a hundred commercials. Go for it. If these people are set to finish ruining this country, let's do slash and burn on the negative ads. That way if they take over the House and Senate, we can at least say we warned America. Go Democrats!!

    August 21, 2010 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  20. La Piovra

    This is the same Rick Santorum who proposed well-heeled white mommies stay home and make sure their children grow up with the education and breeding suited to the power elite, but poor mommies should work as many mcjobs as needed, because too much education would make their children too uppity for their destined station in life. The results of such a faulty upbringing can be viewed by Keith in Austin, who seems to see fit to threaten whoever disagrees with him with jail. If the New Republican Order is ever installed, he would make a first-rate Brown Shirt, but until then most of us would rather he make his ugly noises by blowing a vuvuzela.

    August 21, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  21. steven harnack

    It seems that to be considered a good prospect for national office by Republicans you have to have a number of failures on your resume. ahh, the Republicans are all about repackaging anyway. Repackaging and relabeling. Same old stuff in a shiny new box.

    August 21, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  22. Jeff in TX

    Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. Unreal. When are Tom DeLay and Duke Cunningham coming back?

    August 21, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  23. BillE

    I am from PA and Rick Sanitarium is one scarey dude. Do everything in your power to keep this wack job out. Get to the polls, tell your friends before it's too late.

    August 21, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  24. bill486

    I live in Ohio, but grew up in Pittsburgh. Santorum was & is a snotty rich twerp from the Mt. Lebanon suburb of Pittsburgh.

    "tcaros" & "Jenn" are correct....he was thrown out of office to the relief of ALL OF SOUTH WESTERN PA.

    Keith in Autism...er, Austin:

    You are a psychotic blowhard, like all republicans. Shut up.

    August 21, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  25. u2canfail

    If you lose an election, or simply quit your elected job, become a Republican candidate for President. Fabulous!

    August 21, 2010 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
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