Santorum getting ready to throw hat into ring
May 24th, 2011
09:51 AM ET
4 years ago

Santorum getting ready to throw hat into ring

(CNN) – Rick Santorum is making preparations to formally declare his candidacy for president, a source close to the former senator from Pennsylvania told CNN.

Santorum will make a major announcement regarding his plans for the GOP presidential nomination the week of June 5 and the source added that Santorum is committed to participate in the first Republican presidential debate in New Hampshire. That event, which is co-hosted by CNN, WMUR-TV and the New Hampshire Union Leader, takes place June 13 at Saint Anselm College.

Santorum is arguably the most frequent flyer in the battle for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination. His trip to Iowa last weekend was his 15th to the state that kicks off the presidential primary and caucus calendar since 2009.

In the same period of time, he also made 16 trips to New Hampshire, which holds the first primary, and 14 to South Carolina, the first southern state to vote in the road to the White House.

Late last year Santorum started building up staff in these crucial early voting states. On May 3 he announced the formation of a presidential exploratory committee, filing papers with the Federal Election Commission. Two days later he participated in the first GOP presidential debate, in Greenville, South Carolina.

The former two-term senator lost his 2006 re-election bid by 18 points to Democrat Bob Casey Jr. and until last year was largely out of public view except for appearances on Fox News.

Polls over the past year indicate that Santorum registers in the low single digits nationally among Republican voters when it comes to the choice for their party's next presidential nominee. But, due in part to his strong opposition to abortion rights, Santorum remains popular with many socially conservative voters who have long had an influential role in the GOP primary process. Earlier this spring, Santorum made headlines by winning a much-watched straw poll at the Greenville County, South Carolina Republican convention.

–Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn


Filed under: 2012 • Rick Santorum
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. Chumlee

    One more loser to add to the Republican pile

    May 24, 2011 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  2. Al-NY,NY

    He throws his hat...AND MISSES. There is no way this zealot would win...SO...go ahead GOP and make this guy your nominee. He certainly passes the "purity" test set forth by the american taliban.

    May 24, 2011 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  3. Republicans Are The American Taliban

    Rick Santorum is making preparations ...

    He is all PREPARATION...and NO H...

    May 24, 2011 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  4. gt

    total waste of time , money and air....

    May 24, 2011 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  5. DA

    While I am not a Republican, but looking at the field of people they are putting up for the Office just don't look too good for them, I mean where is the fresh face, the new kid on the block, the rouge? These are folks we have already seen and to be honest, I know most Republican could care less about seeing again!!! TIME FOR YOU GUYS TO GET A NEW BREED!!!

    May 24, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  6. Lost in Texas Forever

    Pretty Ricky needs to read his polling numbers because right now he's even below Sarah Palin. Another waste of time and other people's money. But I'm sure he'll make about the same splash as Herman Cain did.

    May 24, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  7. Sniffit

    "Democrats seem much more worried about Romney's religion than Republicans do."

    Not really. Tha's just comment section blather. It certainly will effect his chances with the fundamentalists the GOP loves to court, particualrly since Romney has flip-flopped on important social/domestic issues that are near and dear to their blackened little religio-fascist hearts, but see, this is where Captain Frothy comes in. Santorum's job is to pretend to run for president in order to rile up that Christian base and then, when he predictably loses the nomination, tell them how very very important it is to vote for the GOP nominee, no matter who it is, in order to save us from the heathen kenyan 'muslin' socialist would-be-dictator devil man.

    "I think they are just worried about Romney who has a very good shot at winning next year's Presidential election. He can beat Obama, but so can several other possible Republican candidates"

    Name them and let's see how seriously we take you.

    May 24, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  8. Steven Colo

    Of course he's flying all over the country. He has the time. The other GOP contenders have jobs.

    May 24, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  9. Soren

    Yawn. Like watching paint dry.

    May 24, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  10. SOUTHERN HOTTIE

    He's an extremist and I don't see him winning the Republican nomination whatsoever.

    Next!

    May 24, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  11. GSMITH

    The Republican primaries are going to be very interesting. Any one of these candidates can beat President Obama. There is very bad news for Barack Obama, no President has ever been relected when unemployment was over 8%. Now that it is 9% there is little chance that it will be below 8% by election day. May the best man or women l enjoy beating Barack Obama in 2012.

    May 24, 2011 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  12. Scott in Atlanta

    Go ahead... throw it in... So we can hurry up and step on it...

    May 24, 2011 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  13. realitybites

    something about a snowball's chance somewhere.......?

    May 24, 2011 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  14. Rudy NYC

    Anyone who pays attention to Republicans has noticed how they have a talent for messaging. They take it to the point where suddenly one day everyone is using the same phrases. The media calls it the playbook. I bring this up with Santorum because the latest phrase coming out of the playbook is "social conservative", which, quite naturally, is supposed to be a good thing.

    Santorum has typically benn described as a social conservative by right wing media. His brand, this does not mean Santorum specifically, seems to be the new message coming out of the GOTP. Ironically, it is exactly what Newt Gingrich was referring to when he used the phrase "right wing social engineering." But, Newt used the right words in totally the wrong context.

    May 24, 2011 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  15. dwmulenex

    ky and prep H users rejoice! the biggest loser is about to grab his ankles and bare his wares for our merriment and political amusement. Bring on the google!

    May 24, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  16. Ernie

    Rick Santorum is in the Newt Gringrich category, Rick Santorum has not money and is not electable.But if he wants to spend money and find out that he can't get elected then that's his choice. What Rick Santorum should do is just live off the tax payer pension that he received when he left congress and stick to writing books and make money on the speech tour. Or he can become a lobbyst. But get elected President? that not going to happen.

    May 24, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  17. mike

    The voters are tired of the same old line of conservative crap that has nothing to do about jobs except for cutting them to balance a budget, when it comes down to shared sacrifice they shut up and what is funny is that there staying on message is crumbling cutting plan parenthood or cutting wages of middle class workers weather they are union or not is a joke to say the least and then sucking up to the rich is appalling now they are using overseas politics to gain support, what are we doing sticking are noise in other countries politics it is always about religion with these fools it is never about the real issues let them fight there own wars by doing what they are doing is only going to divide this country remember the old saying divide and concord

    May 24, 2011 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  18. Rex Raptor

    Google Rick Santorum you won't regret it. The top search result just below his paid ad is pretty hysterical and sums him up nicely.

    May 24, 2011 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  19. Rudy NYC

    Steven Colo
    Of course he's flying all over the country. He has the time. The other GOP contenders have jobs.
    --------------------------
    Like who may I ask? All of the "potential contenders" with jobs have so far declined to join the race. Barbour, Pence, Daniels, Huckabee, etc.

    May 24, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  20. indydave

    If you are not familiar with the word "Dominionist" – look it up, and understand that a) Santorum essentially is one, and b) that it's unacceptably dangerous to put him into any office with more power than a movie-theatre ticket-booth. He gets his narrow – and narrow-minded – constituency in a froth, but fortunately doesn't seem to be gaining any traction outside that fringe bunch of extremist reactionary regressives.

    May 24, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  21. Fair is Fair

    "Name them and let's see how seriously we take you."

    Well, Sniffit, I think you have to agree that no one really took Obama seriously either, at this juncture of his campaign. As happens every so often, a candidate otherwise not thought of as viable can just catch fire. I still think that Americans tend to vote with their pocketbook. Having said that, if the economy is anemic, gas is over $3, and unemployment is over 8%, Obama will be very vulnerable.

    May 24, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  22. The Real Tom Paine

    @GSMITH:

    Unemployment was higher at this point in Reagan's first term: do you remember how that turned out? Let me refresh your memory: He took 49 states, and only lost Minnesota and DC. Everything is trending in Obama's direction, and with the Ryan Plan coming up for a Senate vote and the GOP defections already starting, Obama will have a win of historic proportions. Almost 6 months into the legistlative session, and the House has passed only a handful of bills? Their performance has been pathetic even by the low expectations we have for Congress. As far as Santorum is concerned, he's not even a viable VP candidate since he can't even win his own state.

    May 24, 2011 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  23. Boytjie

    I started reading the headline "Santorum getting ready to throw..." and expected to the next couple of words to be" .. the towel in". Might as well, he doesn't have a chance.

    May 24, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  24. OneMoreTime

    Throw in hat today – throw in towel tomorrow

    May 24, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  25. Sylvia Saint

    Santorum`s own neighbors in PA REJECTED HIM by 18 percentage points in the last election. In American politics that is a tidal wave of opposition. what makes him think that the rest of America wants a man that has been so thoroughly dismissed by those that know him best?

    Like "Winky Palin" he must only be thinking about raising his public profile enough to extract dollars from right wing zealots that blindly oppose President Obama.

    We only have so much energy as a country, we shouldn`t waste it on the likes of Rick Santorum.

    May 24, 2011 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
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