Santorum: Republicans 'ignore some realities' on economy
November 17th, 2011
12:12 PM ET
3 years ago

Santorum: Republicans 'ignore some realities' on economy

Coralville, Iowa (CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum, one of the more conservative White House contenders in the race, told a crowd of Iowans on Thursday that he is "not a big fan" of the Occupy Movement that began on Wall Street two months ago to send a message to the country about income inequality.

But Santorum says they have a point.

While outlining his economic vision to the Iowa State Association of Counties in Coralville, Santorum gently criticized members of his own party, saying that Republicans "ignore some realities at times."

"The bottom line is if it you look at this economy, if you are white collar worker, if you have a college degree, the unemployment rate in America for college educated people is 4.4%," he said. "The unemployment rate for everybody else is over 10%."

The former Pennsylvania senator said his plan to eliminate corporate taxes for manufacturers will spark growth and give lower-income workers more "mobility" in an economy stacked in favor of the wealthy.

After the speech, Santorum told CNN that while he generally considers the Occupiers misguided, they have a "legitimate point."

"The original idea, which is that Wall Street is getting preferential treatment, bailouts and support, while the rest of the country is struggling, is a legitimate point," he said, pointing out that he opposed TARP and the "moral hazards" of Too Big To Fail.

Santorum said President Barack Obama and Republican presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney are awash in money from bankers and beholden to Wall Street interests.

"Look who is funding those campaigns," he said. "We have a very different point of view, and its probably one of the reasons I am not raising a lot of money in New York."

With seven weeks until the Iowa caucuses, Santorum remains stuck in the single digits in polling and has seen candidate after candidate rise and fall since he first began testing the presidential waters here back in 2009.

The latest to surge is former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who has soared to 17% in Iowa and is now in a statistical tie for first place with Romney, businessman Herman Cain and Texas Rep. Ron Paul, according to a Bloomberg News poll this week.

Santorum has made family values a central theme of candidacy, but when pressed on whether he could support Gingrich, who is twice divorced, as the GOP nominee, Santorum punted.

"I can support anybody in the Republican field over President Obama, period," he said.

Santorum only vaguely alluded to the baggage in Gingrich's personal life.

"If I felt comfortable with people in the Republican field, I wouldn't be running," he said. "Each of one of them, while they have their attributes, I believe has problems that I am concerned about, that would be difficult for them to overcome to beat President Obama. That's why I am running for president."


Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Rick Santorum
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. Lynda/Minnesota

    "The original idea, which is that Wall Street is getting preferential treatment, bailouts and support, while the rest of the country is struggling, is a legitimate point," he said."

    Must be my "Republican" roots kicking in because I have found myself agreeing with Rick Santorum two days in a row now. He has too much other baggage for me to ever consider him a viable candidate, but he is - more than the rest of the GOPer field at any rate - coming across as the most adult of the bunch.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    November 17, 2011 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    from the article:
    Santorum gently criticized members of his own party, saying that Republicans "ignore some realities at times."
    -------------–
    He's half right. Republicans ignore reality all of the time, not just some of the time. I find it amazing that a guy with 0-0-0 tax plan could make a statement like that. He must really be desperate to appeal to the American electorate. He's starting to speak the truth.

    November 17, 2011 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    "moral hazards"

    Please. I couldn't be more sick of anything than I am of listening to self-righteous bloviating morons self-declaring their moral superiority to each other. Our biggest mistake as a country has been engaging in the mental tectonic plate shifting necessary to relocate moral magnetic north to the USA such that all moral compasses point back at ourselves as the final arbiters of universal truth, justice and morality. The self-serving dystopia we've been constructing ever since is our biggest shame.

    November 17, 2011 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  4. Lisa P

    See? All that time Rick spends googling himself has finally paid off - he.got.a.clue. Congratulations! Too bad you're still a jerk.

    November 17, 2011 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  5. edpeters101

    Mr. irrelevant speaks again. As above half-right; politics way right, smarts way wrong..

    November 17, 2011 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  6. Ben

    "What a "Nightmare to American Workers,and Main Street!!! This guy is just another colorful "Clown" in the circus???? I bet you an "Unemployment check, This guy is a millionaire now that he has the important inside information on the stock market!!! He does,nt have to worry about "Food" and Medical Insurance for his family??? Why should he care about "Yours"??????? Obama-Biden 2012 Clinton- Warren 2016

    November 17, 2011 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  7. Drew

    I'm sure that Rick Santorum would not have minded the collapse of the entire worlds economy. That would have been OKey Dokey, right Rick?

    November 17, 2011 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  8. v_mag

    Oh, this is great. The Occupiers have a point about unemployment, he says, and Santorum's solution is - here it comes, folks - MORE MONEY FOR THE RICH! Gee, that's worked so well, Rick! Let's try it yet again!

    Ever since Rayguns, the GOBP has shoveled money to the 1%, and now we have recession, vast income inequality, high unemployment, jobs shipped overseas, and Little RIcky thinks we need a lot more of that! What a dork!

    November 17, 2011 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    Sniffit wrote:
    I couldn't be more sick of anything than I am of listening to self-righteous bloviating morons self-declaring their moral superiority to each other. Our biggest mistake as a country has been engaging in the mental tectonic plate shifting necessary to relocate moral magnetic north to the USA such that all moral compasses point back at ourselves as the final arbiters of universal truth, justice and morality. The self-serving dystopia we've been constructing ever since is our biggest shame.
    ------------
    You sound a bit like an angry Hari Seldon, from time to time.

    November 17, 2011 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  10. Josephine

    He would support Bachmann over Obama. Yikes! Funny, you can't see the lobotomy marks on his temples. Must have a good make-up person.

    November 17, 2011 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  11. Thomas

    Lost in Translation , has Rick Santorum is lost in a box !

    November 17, 2011 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  12. marty

    "I can support anyone in the Republican field over President Obama, period", quote unquote from Mr Santorum. This says a lot about the true Rick Santorum who likes to be epitomized as the ultimate, moral, Catholic, upholding all the 'values' that the church pretends to promote. Yet, he will support a liar and a cheat, ( Gringrich, penalized by Congress; calls himself an historian when, in fact, he has been a lobbyist for Freddie Mac to the tune of over a million dollars; he's cheated on not one but two wives, and who knows about the third). Santorum expounds on the principle that marriage is between a man and a woman but he'll support Gingrich, who switched religions to Catholic, gets an annulment from that church to marry the woman with whom he's had an extramarital affair and all is right with the world. If ever there is a case for fraudulent behavior and an even stronger case for real separation of church and state, it is epitomized by Rick Santorum and his republican cronies who pontificate about moral character and rules but do not live by them.

    November 17, 2011 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    "You sound a bit like an angry Hari Seldon, from time to time."

    lol...no idea who that is...had to wikipedia it haha.

    November 17, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  14. Rick McDaniel

    The truth is much worse than Santorum admits to.

    My wife and I both had masters degrees. Neither of us, ever made more than $42K, before we retired this year. The idea that degrees are important, is a real myth. Success is really measured by being in the right place at the right time, and having opportunity.

    Jimmy Carter ruined us......by making it impossible to buy a house, when we needed to be able to do that. We consider that our opportunity was basically taken away by the carter economy, which delayed us almost 20 yrs., of reaching the goals we thought we needed to reach.

    Obama is doing the same to people in their 20's now. They will never get ahead, because they will lose too many years, where they can make no progress. They probably won't be as bad off, of course, as we were, because interest is under 4% right now, and we had to deal with 17%, after Carter.

    November 17, 2011 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  15. WhereIsPalin

    the unemployment rate in America for college educated people is 4.4%," he said. "The unemployment rate for everybody else is over 10%."

    And if everyone had a college degree, what would the overall unemployment rate be?

    November 17, 2011 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "All that time Rick spends googling himself has finally paid off "

    I suppose that's one way of putting it if you're trying to avoid another child and have been told that using a jimmy hat is a horrible sin.

    November 17, 2011 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  17. Rudy NYC

    Rick McDaniel wrote:
    Jimmy Carter ruined us......by making it impossible to buy a house, when we needed to be able to do that. We consider that our opportunity was basically taken away by the carter economy, which delayed us almost 20 yrs.,
    -----------------
    What did Carter do? Are you sure that it wasn't Reaganomics, which is still being practiced to this day, that kept you locked down in the middle class? Most of that time period were Reagan years, followed by 4 years of GHW Bush during which time we saw the savings and loan collapse. An economic blow that we didn't recover from for at least a decade, not until GW Bush came into office and tried to speed things up by helping them along.

    November 17, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  18. vic , nashville ,tn

    Rick Santorum “Unemployment rate in America for college educated people is 4.4%," and “The unemployment rate for everybody else is over 10%."
    but Tea party “ending student loans”
    Republicans totally confused

    November 17, 2011 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  19. Ray E. (Georgia)

    I'm not sure the Republician's are ignoring the relity of the economy or the Federal Debt. After a while it get's old arguing with an idiot. You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. Trying to explain the cold hard facts of life to those protesters on Wall Street is like talking to a mud fence. If they want to straighten out the World to their liking they are going to have to do it themselves. No one else is going to do it for them. . Wall Street isn't the problem. I wonder if they will ever get the message.

    November 17, 2011 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  20. Arun

    Some please tell these REPUBES that eliminating corporate taxes does not put people back to work. Demand for a product puts people back to work and the only way to do that is to provide those who spend, and it's not the rich, need jobs so they can purchase products. Corporatioins are sitting on boad loads of money, so why haven't they created any jobs? It's called demand, their isn't anyone to buy their products. So all you REPUBES that want to give tax breaks to corporations and the rich so they can create jobs, this is completely false and you know it!!

    What does a person with money buy, they already have all their houses, cars, and whatever toy they may want to have. They put the money in offshore shelters so the money doesn't get taxed. Take a look at who the account holders are in banks in Switzerland and the Caribbean.

    November 17, 2011 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  21. James Ruston

    What is the message, Ray?

    November 17, 2011 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  22. rs

    Be VERY careful, Santorum, With your commentary on the economy and the OWS movement you come dangerously close to actually making sense and relating to the majority of Americans. They will reprogram you back to the usual GOP/TP utter nonsense if you keep that up!

    November 17, 2011 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  23. Wayne

    DEMAND..a tax cut for manufacturers DOES NOT INCREASE DEMAND...they are going to manufacture what and for who? Who will buy it. No raise in years and no equity to tap into..there goes my expendable dollar. Instead if your household makes less than 250k annually cut those taxes in HALF!! Now there some demand. Raise taxes on wealthy and stop giving billions to cash cow oil companies...There you have it. Situation resolved. You need customers to have businesses...why is this concept too difficult for them to understand.

    November 17, 2011 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  24. NVa Native

    Carter is the new boogey man? What next – blame global warming on Pelosi? And the GOPTs don't even see the joke they've become?

    November 17, 2011 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  25. mesamick

    Your correct Santorum, cons DO ignore the devastating economic reality you and your kind have created over the last 10 years and instead of trying to fix it you prefer to take away womens reproductive rights, eliminate all our social safety nets and declare pizza a veggie. Talk about being in denial and delusional...

    November 17, 2011 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
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