Santorum: ‘I talk the talk and I walk the walk’
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum greets supporters in Somerset, PA during the announcement that he will seek the GOP nomination for president in 2012.
June 7th, 2011
09:13 PM ET
4 years ago

Santorum: ‘I talk the talk and I walk the walk’

(CNN) - New GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum continued to tout his conservative credentials in an interview set to air Wednesday on CNN’s “John King, USA.”

“I’ve been a great, consistent leader of the conservative cause,” said Santorum, a former Pennsylvania senator. “I’ve been someone who’s had ideas, fought for those ideas and have been able to accomplish things.”

He stood firm on his social values, affirmed his support for a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and listed his accomplishments in and out of office.

Among them, Santorum told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King that he “authored the legislation” that “led the charge” to reform welfare, an achievement he described as ending the “federal entitlement.”

And “entitlement” is a catchphrase for conservatives, as House Republicans continue to grapple with GOP House Budget Chair Paul Ryan’s plan to dramatically alter Medicare.

Santorum said he supported Ryan’s controversial plan, and he wouldn’t stop with Medicare.

“If you look at my record on economics and the problems facing today, I’ve never voted for a tax increase … [I’m] someone who has had the courage to stand up in good times and in bad and to deliver the conservative message, [I] lead the charge on Social Security reform.”

And though his stance on that reform may have cost him a Senate seat – Santorum backed President George W. Bush’s plan to privatize Social Security – he believes that solution isn’t feasible anymore.

“We’re not in a situation where we can do that,” he said.

“We’re either going to have to raise taxes or cut benefits – some combination that is going to be necessary. Unfortunately, that’s where we’re stuck.”

Santorum, who’s seeking the GOP nomination for president in 2012, graded the current president on his performance. Though he stated that President Barack Obama has “done a good job” in Iraq, he was careful to hedge the approval.

“He’s continued the policies that were successful toward the end of the Bush administration. He’s finished those and I think Iraq now is doing well,” Santorum said.

But when it comes to Libya, the candidate says Obama is just plain wrong.

“I can’t imagine handling [Libya] any worse than a president going out and saying that [Moammar] Gadhafi has to go [and] doing nothing about it,” he said. “I mean, it’s been all over the map and it’s committing American resources for a very unclear objective.”

When it comes to 2012, Santorum believes he’s the best candidate to take Obama’s job because, “I talk the talk and I walk the walk and I think that’s what people are looking for – an authentic conviction conservative who has the ability to bring people together to get things done.”

On Monday, June 13, CNN will host the first New Hampshire Republican Presidential Debate, live from Manchester, NH at 8 p.m. ET. Follow all the issues and campaign news leading up to the debate on CNNPolitics.com and @cnnpolitics on Twitter.


Filed under: 2012 • Rick Santorum • TV-John King U.S.A.
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Flint Rock

    Mr. Santorum may" talk the talk and walk the walk", but no one is listening and nobody is watching.

    June 7, 2011 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  2. 54465446

    Unfortunately, he can't do both at the same time!

    June 7, 2011 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  3. Larry L

    He's mean and hateful enough. His ideas make sound bites the right-wing should enjoy. None of his recommendations would actually work in the real world. He's a natural for the Republican circus!

    June 7, 2011 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  4. Troy

    Constitutional amendment prohibiting same-gender marriage = FAIL

    June 7, 2011 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  5. david bidlack

    the word" intitlement" is a republicans atempt to rename medicare and social sucurity making it sound like an unpaid for gift. this is a fact that republicans won't deal with and its the deficit we have in federal spending has nothing to do with spending on social sucurity or medicare. i am a baby boomer and remember when in the 1970s social sucurity taxes were raised to creat a suplus for us baby boomers when we retired. the program has always been in the black. the problem is that presidents liks george bush borrowed all the suplus money from the account for all eight years he was in office. just in his last year he borrowed $674 billion to off set his out of control spending so it would look like he was not the first president in history to run a one year deficit of a trillion dollars. the I,O.U.s left in the account to show how much money was borrowed from the account now is at $2.5 trillion. george bush and the republicans gave the baby boomers surplus money in taxes raised from social sucurity to the top %1 of the very rich in a tax cut. the baby boomers retirement was given away to the rich and the republicans don't want you to know it! they have even talked americans into thinking that social sucurity and medicare have something to do with the deficit which is untrue! don't believe any of this? your on the internet so go do your own home work on the facts for a change before you cast your next vote.

    June 7, 2011 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  6. Kenneth the VI of Minneapolis

    Hummmm....all the GOP presidential candidates sound alike.....I have reasons to believe that the GOP talking points are being abused.

    June 7, 2011 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  7. T'sah from Virginia

    [Santorum: ‘I talk the talk and I walk the walk’]
    I sit here and I stare into space and I gawk!!
    ["I think that’s what people are looking for.."]
    Yep, the reason why your ratings are such a low score!!!

    Hang it up Santorum – you may “talk the talk” (NOT!!) but your WALK should be in the direction to that “Bridge to Nowhere!!”

    June 7, 2011 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  8. Marla

    So, to make it plain and simple – This tool would abolish the Medicare and Social Security that so many of us have spent a lifetime paying into, would abolish welfare for the poorest, sickest and weakest in our society, take women's rights and women's healthcare back to the days when they were practically non-existent, ostracize our LGBT community, probably try to make our government a theocracy, AND seems that he would prefer that our government had moved unilaterally into a war, rather than cooperating with NATO.
    I certainly hope that all voters are listening to the talk he is talking.
    VOTE DEMOCRAT 2012!!

    June 7, 2011 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  9. ThinkAgain

    Poor people are not "entitled" to help in making ends meet, but the wealthy and corporations are "entitled" to bailouts, unnecessary tax cuts and a myriad other benefits.

    So much for Santorum's "Christian" values. In his good book, the only "deserving" are those with cash.

    June 7, 2011 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  10. ThinkAgain

    Santorum is just another distraction the GOP is throwing at the American public to keep them from figuring out that their tried-and-failed policies are what took our country down the toilet – and that they want nothing more than to finish the job.

    How else do you explain the GOP's assault on the Middle Class and the working men and women of America? They want to turn us into just another third-world labor source, with fly-by-night infrastructure, no social safety net, no public education and certainly no health care.

    The GOP really hates America – and Santorum is one of its foot soldiers.

    June 7, 2011 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  11. Joe E.

    This flake actually believes that he will make it through the primaries? Dear God, I hope so! If there's a male equivalent to Sarah Palin, it's Rick Santorum. His chances in a general election will be equivalent to sister Sarah's, slim and none. Go Rick Go! Get that GOP nomination! Then I can count on another four years to try to fix the reeking mess that you, Duh-Bya, and the rest of the idiots created. Where do I donate!

    June 7, 2011 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  12. Clwyd

    But what he says is just more give to the rich, give to business, give to corporations and the heck with the middle class! Take from soiail programs let insurance companies run Medicare and Medicaid! Sorry! Not!

    June 7, 2011 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  13. roro

    If it were up to this creep, we'd have a theocracy, like Iran. Women's rights would be non-existent, and God help the gays. All seniors should be very wary of him. He wants to eliminate everything he calls "entitlements", except of course tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy. Pennsylvanians already got rid of him, but like a bad penny, he keeps turning up. He would be very bad for this country.

    June 7, 2011 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  14. Bob in Pa

    A pretty decent guy who usually does what he says he is going to.

    June 7, 2011 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  15. Anonymous

    You have to be kidding !

    June 7, 2011 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  16. Kara

    By 'stood firm on social values', he means he doesn't believe in women having the right to choose whether to bear children.
    This is the charmer who also said that as a black man , Obama was not entitled to an opinion on when life began (not that Obama ever expressed one since, unlike Rick Santorum, he doesn't consider himself to be holier than the rest of us)
    Oh, and he also compared homosexuals to bestialists.
    This is the man CNN is carrying water for. I hope you all will be pleased when you turn America into Iran and I hope whatever kickbacks the RNC may be funnelling to CNN are worth injuring women in this way.

    June 7, 2011 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  17. Patrick from Minnesota

    Mr. Santorum, let's be honest, you won't be able to live up to that promise (but then again, neither can anyone else). You're setting yourself up for failure (but then again, is that such a bad thing?).

    June 7, 2011 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  18. one voice

    This CLOWN is a legend in His own small mind. Only braindead IDIOTS in South Carilina would vote for this pea brain.

    June 8, 2011 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  19. ITALIAN NONNO

    You can walk and talk all you like,.. Obama will clean your clock.

    June 8, 2011 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  20. Squigman

    Stop talking, and start walking. Long walk, short pier.

    June 8, 2011 01:00 am at 1:00 am |
  21. Santorum

    As I tour this wonderful country I'm amazed by the heady and frothy mixture of all races, black, brown and white. On one stop my tour bus had problems with the rear axle, and a local man was able to lube it up so I could continue to plow along a muddy dirt road.

    I love this country.

    June 8, 2011 01:50 am at 1:50 am |
  22. John in Brooklyn

    ....and, he forgets to add.....has been booted from office by middle of the road Pennsylvanians when they realized just how much of a wing nut he really is!

    June 8, 2011 02:23 am at 2:23 am |
  23. Marry

    Rick Santorum is the typical GOP/TP candidate. Set in his ways, no new ideas, and not willing to make the country a place for EVERYONE. He does not want to work to level the playing field between the have and have not’s. Without including the poor and the middle class into the future, there will be no good future! Keep your interest in mind when you hear the GOP/TP talk. They are the party of "NO" advantage for you!

    June 8, 2011 03:08 am at 3:08 am |
  24. duke13

    2 words for Santorum. Totally Unqualified!

    June 8, 2011 04:31 am at 4:31 am |
  25. NATHAN WIMBERLY

    Bozo wants to end Social security. He is toast. These radical extremist wingnuts never learn.

    June 8, 2011 06:38 am at 6:38 am |
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