Romney: Santorum not fiscal conservative
February 17th, 2012
05:42 PM ET
2 years ago

Romney: Santorum not fiscal conservative

Boise, Idaho (CNN) - Mitt Romney unleashed his harshest public attacks to date on his surging rival, Rick Santorum, during a rally in Boise Friday.

The former Massachusetts governor told an audience of more than one thousand people that Santorum was not a fiscal conservative, and accused him of contributing to the rising federal deficit during his time in the Senate.

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

"I know that Sen. Santorum is getting his moment in the spotlight now, which is a good thing. I hope people take a very close look at his record," Romney said. "He voted to raise the debt ceiling five different times without compensating cuts. And he's a big proponent of earmarks."

Romney added: "If you want a fiscal conservative you can't vote for Rick Santorum, 'cause he's not."

The GOP candidate has not directly criticized Santorum in campaign events in over a week.

However, Romney's campaign and an outside group supporting him have applied increasing pressure on the former senator, who is riding on a wave of momentum after a trio of wins in early voting states Feb. 7.

Earlier on Friday in Ohio, the state's attorney general Mike DeWine announced he was withdrawing his support for Romney in favor Santorum.

Reporters questioned Romney about the news after his Boise event.

As staffers urged the governor to move along, Romney smiled at reporters and walked away.

Also see:

Friess apologizes for birth control comment

Poll: Santorum remains on top in Michigan

Maine GOP chair: Romney will maintain win

Republican donor expected to shell out $10 million to Gingrich super PAC


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. Michigan for Mitt

    And the vest starts to unravel. Of course Santo is a 'practice what I preach' not what I do guy. Gov't increased 80% during his time in Washington. He's part of the problem and people want him to fix it? He's never led anything.

    February 17, 2012 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  2. Namejkane fl

    Where's boise????? Moon base???

    February 17, 2012 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  3. Thomas

    Mormon Mafia Vs Catholic Fascist

    Two Anger Men

    February 17, 2012 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  4. DENNA

    The entire GOP are fiscal conservatives, which means, they do whatever is possible to help the 1% while poking the 99% in the eye with a sharp stick. Fiscal conservatives are greedy people who don't want to do anything that might help the less fortunate. Fiscal conservatives are self-righteous people who like to point to the unemployed and say that they don't want to work. They completely ignore that jobs have been scarce since the third year of the Bush presidency. This country needs fewer fiscal conservatives (and social conservatives) and more people who care and can actually help this country.

    February 17, 2012 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  5. Bill

    If Mittens says so, it must be correct, right? Nice try, but you are toast buster.

    February 17, 2012 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  6. Bean for Paul

    Pot calling the kettle black!

    February 17, 2012 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  7. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Rick may not be as big a liar as Mittens, so that makes Mittens more conservative.

    February 17, 2012 06:38 pm at 6:38 pm |
  8. dagoberto

    At least Mitt Rmoney has that point clear: Rick Santorum is not fical conservative.

    February 17, 2012 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  9. UsHonor

    Santorum raised the debt ceiling 8 times, increasing the debt by $4.7 million. He voted on the bridge to nowhere and for a $50 million indoor rain forest. Watch the YouTube video the santorum connection.

    February 17, 2012 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  10. stranger in an increasingly strange land

    When you translate the term "Fiscal Conservative" from Republican to English it means: We line the very richest pockets with gold while raising taxes on the middle class and cutting benefits for the elderly, the poor, the middle class, etc.
    Oh to heck with it, Republicans only care about the common people when appearing to care will get them votes. Republicans know there is a need for the lesser folks, otherwise the rich would have to make their own beds, cook their own food, mow their own yards and their trophy wives would have to do their own nails and hair, just like commoners.

    February 17, 2012 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  11. UsHonor

    Santorum worked with Walmart to limit increases on minimum wage and overtime pay. Watch the YouTube video Rick santorum who is he type in Rick santorum who is he Walmart.

    February 17, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  12. UsHonor

    The political corruption and quagmire santorum was involved in needs to be vetted. Watch the YouTube video the gang of four starring Rick santorum.

    February 17, 2012 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    My opinion is that Santorum is very strong (kind of extreme) social consevative and fiscal liberal. Mitt told the truth. However, It is up to voter to decide.

    February 17, 2012 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  14. Vanka

    Fiscal conservative? Romney got $1.3 billion in Federal Government earmarks for the 2002 Winter Olympics in his Mormon-controlled Salt Lake City, Utah!

    McCain said:
    "What the Olympic games, supposedly hosted and funded by Salt Lake City, which began in corruption and bribery, has now turned into is an incredible pork-barrel project for Salt Lake City and its environs," McCain said. " I do not understand how we Republicans call ourselves conservatives and then treat the taxpayers dollars in this fashion. This is terribly objectionable."

    Romney can't take on anything without distorting, flip flopping, and being hypocritical!

    February 17, 2012 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  15. Ron

    Why waste the time and money on a presidential election in 2012? Obama has already won it. Just do the "down ticket" elections to throw the rest of the tea-publicans out of office. Imagine how much further along in the recovery we would be if repubs hadn't made the defeat of President Obama their primary objective. What if they had actually worked to end the recession instead of filibustering EVERYTHING????

    February 17, 2012 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  16. Andrew

    Santorum endorsed and campaigned for Romney in 2008 and Romney has only gotten more conservative since then.
    Santorum voted against E VERIFY, which would have dramatically reduced the number of illegal immigrants in the USA.
    Santorum is not going to win the nomination; he is not on the ballot in Virginia, and is not going to win in a number of the winner takes all states. He might not make the ballot in Indiana and possibly Tennessee too. Romney is going to win, it is going to take him awhile, but he is going to win.

    February 17, 2012 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  17. Gemini Girl

    The reason that R-money "pandered to the trees" when he said "the trees here (in Michigan) are just the right height" is because he himself is wooden! LOL. Good grief, how the h-ll did he ever become a quarter-billionaire?? He is TOO RICH to be president, he will NEVER EVER sympathize with the majority of the people. WHAT DID WE AMERICANS DO TO deserve these kinds of Republican candidates?? People like R-money, crazy Newty, ultra-crazy Santorium, uber-crazy Bachmann, ad nauseum....:-(

    February 17, 2012 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  18. mirrorlogic

    Hi – my name is Willard Mitt (okay not really but let's pretend)...I'm a once Liberal, I mean Independent...I mean Severely Conservative that would like to not the Rick Santorum is not a real Conservative....

    ...Okay Willard Mitt...we get it. What you really want is to win however possible.

    February 17, 2012 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  19. julien vergara

    Yes we have to know about santorum accomplishment

    February 17, 2012 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  20. GI Joe.

    Hmmm – so did rmoney with his "olympics-saving" $1.2 BILLION FROM US TAXPAYERS - for UTAH?

    February 17, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  21. Pat

    Oh boy........two greedy, amoral, hypocritical, religion-funded people battling it out. Oh what a circus........what a show!

    February 17, 2012 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  22. pn

    I like a severe blood bath. It is severely amusing to see Romney fumbling against an underfunded religious wacko.

    February 17, 2012 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  23. Dave

    Seriously, Romney who is basically a Democrat hiding as a Republican is calling Santorum not fiscally responsible? How about Comrade Obama? He tripled the deficit while in past our GDP output? Where is Romney screaming about that?

    February 17, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  24. Texas Doc

    Oh yeah, well at least he's a Christian.

    February 17, 2012 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  25. Sorensen

    Somebody ought to tell Romney, that it no longer means anything, what he throws at Sanatorium. First, Romneys
    credibility is gone. Second, not many smart people really cares about Sanatorium and his sick opinions on contraception,
    religion, gay people, etc.etc. He is now totally unelectable for any public office, after he got kicked out of Pensylvania..
    That leaves Gingrich, and that is impossible. And Ron Paul, who is a nice man and a joke.
    So maybe Romney still has a chance. What a disaster for the GOP.

    February 17, 2012 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
1 2