Mud gun aids Santorum bid in new ad
February 15th, 2012
08:47 AM ET
3 years ago

Mud gun aids Santorum bid in new ad

Washington (CNN) – The political back and forth between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum heated up Wednesday with new ads in the next states to vote in the Republican presidential primary.

Santorum's campaign took a comedic turn in a new spot literally taking aim at Romney's record, including the health care legislation passed in Massachusetts. The commercial airing in Michigan uses an actor wearing a tie to portray Romney shooting mud at a cut out of Santorum, but missing his target.

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"This time Romney's firing his mud at Rick Santorum … Romney's trying to hide from his big government 'Romneycare,'" the narrator says.

"In the end Mitt Romney's ugly attacks are going to backfire," the ad continues before mud splatters over the faux-Romney.

Responding to the ad with a chuckle on Fox News Wednesday, Romney said "that's the nature of politics, which is that you always accuse the other guy of what you're doing yourself."

The former Massachusetts governor said his campaign has yet to run negative ads against Santorum, who he said went negative in South Carolina and whose PAC did the same in Missouri. Santorum is also up with biography-touting spots in early voting states.

Although Romney's campaign has run positive spots, especially in his native Michigan where voters head to the polls on February 28, the super PAC supporting his candidacy has not been so kind.

Restore Our Future released a spot in Michigan as well as Arizona, which also votes on February 28, and Ohio, where ballots will be cast on March 6 that characterizes Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, as a "big spender Washington insider."

The new commercial is consistent with Team Romney's line of criticism that Santorum supported increases to the debt ceiling and pork barrel spending while serving in the Senate.

"Santorum voted to raise the debt limit five times and for billions in wasteful projects," the ad's narrator says. "In a single session Santorum co-sponsored 51 bills to increase spending and zero to cut spending."

The group has purchased $640,000 worth of air time in Michigan, in addition to the $121,000 in Arizona, as previously reported by CNN.

The uptick in TV spending comes as Santorum has experienced a surge following wins in Missouri, Mississippi and Colorado. Recent polling shows Santorum is on top of Romney, but within the sampling error, in Michigan and Ohio polling. The two candidates will next meet on stage at a presidential debate co-sponsored by CNN in Arizona on February 22.

Also see:

Gingrich: Santorum 'misunderstands' modern warfare

Santorum slams Obama administration as 'elite snobs'

Romney surrogates attack Santorum's record

CNN Poll: Romney's likability fading

CNN Poll: Gender and income gaps in GOP nomination battle


Filed under: 2012 • Ads • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum
soundoff (158 Responses)
  1. Laurie in Spokane

    I'm not for either Romney or Santorum, or any other Republican in the race. They're all right-wing wackos as far as I'm concerned, with some bigots in there also. But, I have to say their antics in this nomination fight are really helpful to the Democrats. All this mud-slinging, name-calling, lies, innuendos........just makes it easier for Obama to win in November. These guys can't seem to come up with valid, solid ideas on their own, but have to try to tear down the other buys. They are so pathetic.

    February 15, 2012 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  2. DeBo

    Is that mud on his shirt? Looks more like Santorum to me...

    February 15, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  3. ThinkAgain

    @Vader: "NO ONE is without access to 'health CARE'. "

    At an emergency room, you can't get preventative care such as vaccinations, PAP smears, mammograms or routine blood draws to monitor ongoing conditions (children who are Type 1 diabetics, the one in four women who develop low thyroidism after childbirth, etc.).

    Having access to these kinds of services, as well as annual exams, lowers the overall costs of health care by preventing disease, identifying conditions in need of medical attention in the early stages, and ensuring the ongoing health of a person, which in turn makes them a more productive contributor to society.

    From a purely economical standpoint, the more folks who have access to medical care, the better off we all are. As it is today, emergency rooms, which provide the most expensive care, are seeing far too many people who, if they'd had access to ongoing health care, would never have ended up in the ER – and passing along the cost of that care to the rest of us.

    Vader, you simply need to accept the fact that part of a civil society is providing health care to all of its people. If you'd rather not live in that kind of society, you can always move to Somalia where you won't be bothered by such pesky things as government or infrastructure, let alone "health care."

    February 15, 2012 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  4. DENNA

    Okay America, don't let the Fox News Channel and the Tea Party destroy Obamacare. If you think people without insurance aren't being paid for us, think again. And what kind of fool votes against their own best interest? Oh, I know. Conservation/Tea Partiers. You people are nuts!

    February 15, 2012 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    "Vader, you simply need to accept the fact that part of a civil society is providing health care to all of its people."

    In fairness to Vader, I think he did say he was for national healthcare.

    February 15, 2012 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  6. Kathyrn

    Never mind the tacky tasteless mudslinging that Romney does so well, would Andrea Saul explain why the SON OF DETROIT is driving around in a Chrysler made inCanada?

    February 15, 2012 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    Looks like Romney got some Santorum on him

    February 15, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    Anonymous wrote:

    In fairness to Vader, I think he did say he was for national healthcare.
    ----------–
    TRUE.
    But, that was after he immolated himself by saying everyone has access to free health care, which is patently false.

    February 15, 2012 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  9. Jason K

    Looks like Romney got some Santorum on his shirt.

    February 15, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  10. Mike

    So Santorum is having a shot at the nomination, which will very likely alienate independents further with his extreme positions imposing his religious views on others. All I can say with this final crop of Republican candidates - Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!! You are going to make Obama's re-election so much easier!

    February 15, 2012 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  11. Josh

    Seeing "mud gun" and "santorum" in once sentence is cringeworthy in the right contexts.

    February 15, 2012 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  12. v_mag

    Truth and Nothing But the Truth:

    Obama's politics of envy will not work this time.
    -–

    Oh, give the Faux News talking points a break, will ya? You ride them everyday. Take a day off, read a book, learn something. You sound like a horse's patoot when you spout that cr*p.

    February 15, 2012 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  13. TrueCoug

    Ol' Mitt got a little Santorum on his shirt there.

    February 15, 2012 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  14. RINO Bil

    Santorum is one of the few GOP candidates who would cause me to vote for Obama again.

    February 15, 2012 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  15. Ann

    Romney should run as Independent and not try to fit the narrow definition of conservatism that Republicans believe they owe. The ignorant Santorum supporters live in the Middle Ages, of course they don't understand Romney's pragmatism. Santorum has no chance against Obama who at least learned one thing or two in the last 4 years. I don't understand why Romney is wasting his time and money with these idiots.

    February 15, 2012 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  16. Jack V

    How could a guy with a "google" problem expect to be the leader of the free world?

    February 15, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  17. Jack V

    It's funny to read the people who rail about intellectual elites. I think this was the same methods both Mao & Pol Pot used to get rid of people they thought might be dangerous (ie freedom lovers)

    February 15, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  18. Seth

    Didn't Feingold run that ad back in 1992? Where the two other candidates were throwing mud back and forth at each other's cutouts?

    February 15, 2012 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  19. GOP Brain Dead

    This is turning out to be a battle of the feable minded.

    February 15, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  20. Shannon

    I can't imagine being a Republican for numerous reasons, number one being I'm not insane, but can you imagine having to choose one of these losers. Seriously an elitist phony, a woman hating religious zealot, a serial adulterer with no ethics, or a slightly crazy older guy. It's to bad the party of family values has none, maybe if they did, they would have better candidates.

    February 15, 2012 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  21. jack

    i am not comfortable with a potential presidential candidate posing with automatic weapons!

    February 15, 2012 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  22. Ryan

    "Mud Gun".....The new weapon for MW3!!!

    February 15, 2012 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  23. Ryan

    Great commercial! Love it! Makes me want to go home and play some more MW3!!!

    February 15, 2012 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  24. Indy

    Romneyvision is a narrow path to help only the rich and it is failing with people that have their eyes open.

    February 15, 2012 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  25. Andrew Botwin

    It doesn't matter which of these two time losers is nominated, we're stuck with professor Obama four more years.

    February 15, 2012 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
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