Super PAC supporting Santorum to become more active
January 5th, 2012
07:18 PM ET
3 years ago

Super PAC supporting Santorum to become more active

Washington (CNN) - A group supporting Rick Santorum’s presidential bid is gearing up to become more active as the former senator sees his political fortunes on the rise after a surprise second place finish in the Iowa caucuses.

The super PAC Red, White and Blue is planning to go on the air soon “with a significant buy” of ad time in South Carolina, the group’s spokesman, Stuart Roy, told CNN Thursday. He would not detail when exactly the spots would go up and said the organization hoped to soon release details of the amount of the purchase.

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South Carolinians can expect to soon see an onslaught of campaign ads in the next two weeks before its primary on January 21. Santorum’s campaign will soon go up with a major buy there. Mitt Romney has commercials on the air, and the super PAC supporting him, Restore Our Future, also has commercials on the air in the Palmetto state.

Just as Santorum’s campaign has seen a major spike in fundraising following his strong Iowa finish, the super PAC Red, White and Blue has also seen a major spike in money coming in since Tuesday night, Roy told CNN. He would not detail an exact amount.

"It was a terrific day yesterday, and that has continued today,” Roy said.

He added that Wednesday was the single largest day of fundraising for the group and said the pace on Thursday “has been very similar to yesterday’s pace.” The group has seen previous donors give more donations, and some who earlier refused to give are now reversing themselves.

Because it had limited funds, Red, White and Blue spent $289,000 on commercials in Iowa, according to CNN’s ad consultant Kantar Media’s CMAG.

Conservative activist Foster Friess, a major Wyoming investment executive, confirmed to CNN he is one of the major supporters behind Red, White and Blue and vowed to CNN to help increase the group’s ability to put out a message supporting Santorum.

“I have been a fan since I met Rick Santorum in 1996,” Friess told CNN by telephone Thursday. He went to Iowa this week and campaigned alongside Santorum in a pickup truck along with a small group of others and spoke at one of the precinct caucuses on the former Senator’s behalf Tuesday night.

He refused to say how much he so far has donated to the group. “I don’t want my wife to find out,” he joked.

Friess, who donated to Romney in 2008, is so jazzed by Santorum’s rise he returned CNN’s request for comment shortly after leaving knee surgery and was planning to call at least 10 major donors later Thursday to push them to donate to the super PAC.

“I just got rolled out of surgery,” he told CNN and joked he was going to start calling right then.

“I am so committed,” he added, saying he believes Santorum will be the strongest challenger to President Barack Obama. “I am going to encourage any person I know.”

The super PACs have played a large role in this year’s Republican presidential primary campaign. While they can’t legally coordinate their efforts with the campaigns they support, these committees have often done the dirty work of attacking the other contenders, allowing the candidates’ operations to stay more positive.

The $1.2 million spent in Iowa by the group supporting Romney, Restore Our Future, is credited with helping to raise questions about Newt Gingrich’s record and deflate his popularity in the state.

While it won’t run ads in New Hampshire, Red, White and Blue is planning to conduct phone banking on Santorum’s behalf.

The group is also looking ahead and plans on running an ad campaign in Florida, which holds its primary on Jan. 31–10 days after South Carolina. Restore Our Future is already airing commercials in the state.

Also see:

DNC highlights old Romney-McCain tension

Gingrich hones message in New Hampshire

Santorum raises more than $1 million in one night

Huntsman to air first TV spot

Perry will 'reset the campaign' in South Carolina, adviser says


Filed under: 2012 • Rick Santorum • South Carolina
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. T'sah From Virginia

    Sanorum's 15-minutes of fame will be up in 5...............4..................3................2................1

    Obama 2012!!

    January 5, 2012 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  2. Gary

    I wish the press would have looked this close at Obama.

    January 5, 2012 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  3. Lenny Ladner

    Ron Paul is tbe only solution.
    The internationalist, statist media is the problem!

    January 5, 2012 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  4. willie floyd

    No amount of t.v. ads will put him in the W.H. His social ideas are just to radical.

    January 6, 2012 06:07 am at 6:07 am |
  5. Bob Moore

    Sad, sad eyes Santorum. What a joke. He was ranked one of the most corrupt legislators before being shamefully voted out of office. A proven failure, just like Mitt.

    ROMNEY is a 1-TERM GOVERNOR who left office with 34% APPROVAL!!!

    Huntsman is a 2-term Governor, who left office with 88% approval.

    Jon Huntsman is anti-establishment & the most successful Governor alive.

    :::FACTS:::
    as 2-term Governor, REFORMED healthcare (w/out mandate), education, & taxes. Pew ranked #1 governed state. Now state #1 in eduation spending, #1 in JOB GROWTH. often >90% approval in office. Passed pro-life amendments. Safeguarded 2nd amendment. Now, WSJ ranks him most fiscally conservative & ***BEST JOBS PLAN*** & UNLIKE NEWT, RICK AND MITT, wants to: decline Afghan troops in favor of special ops, allow common law marriages, medical marijuana, end too-big-to-fail, drastically cut deficit with across the board reform, end loopholes, end subisidies, reform Congressional lobbying

    PROVEN REFORMATION LEADER

    *JON HUNTSMAN 2012*

    January 6, 2012 06:35 am at 6:35 am |