March 13th, 2012
06:15 PM ET
3 years ago

Romney says Santorum at 'desperate end' of campaign

(CNN) – Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was blunt in describing rival Rick Santorum's White House prospects Tuesday, saying Santorum's bid for the GOP nomination was coming to a "desperate end."

Speaking on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," the former Massachusetts governor and two-time presidential candidate said Santorum was bending the truth to resuscitate a losing effort.

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"I'm afraid his conclusions are exactly wrong," Romney said of recent attacks from Santorum and the super PAC supporting Santorum's candidacy. "Senator Santorum is at the desperate end of his campaign, and trying in some way to boost his prospects. Frankly misrepresenting the truth is not a good way of doing that."

Romney went on to explain the delegate math that he said was stacked against a Santorum victory.

"He's far behind in the delegate count, far behind in the popular vote count," Romney said. "If you look at the math, it's a very difficult road for him. So at this stage, he's looking for some way to gain ground. I understand that, but I would hope you would use truth as one of the pillars of your strategy as opposed to trying to come up with one attack after another."

CNN currently estimates Romney with 459 delegates, well ahead of Santorum, who stands at 203 delegates. The two other candidates in the race – former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Rep. Ron Paul – are at 118 and 66 delegates, respectively.

Addressing the recent massacre of civilians by an American serviceman in Afghanistan, Romney said the isolated incident should not determine America's role in the country going forward.

"Certainly it's time on a regular basis to review our mission there, and not to make decisions based upon some actions by a crazed gunman," Romney said. "We don't determine our foreign policy based on something of that nature, but of course from time to time we have to assess what the process is there. I'm very disappointed that the president has not over the last year or two talked about what's happening in Afghanistan, what progress is being made, describing a time table, or why his timetable makes sense or not."

Also see:

Romney speaks up for Hatch in new TV ad

Romney focused on Obama and gas prices, not competitors

Another Republican joins primary battle to face Gillibrand

Religion, gas prices, and beating Obama on the minds of Alabama voters

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (43 Responses)
  1. Bill

    All the way to Tampa!

    March 13, 2012 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  2. James

    Romney and his team have been "saying" alot lately but that doesn't make it so. Desperation??? Given the money you spent, Willard, your party elites still don't like you. You get the HOLD YOUR NOSES vote.

    March 13, 2012 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  3. Ron

    How 'bout that stock market? Above 13K!!! Yep, this economy sucks.

    March 13, 2012 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  4. Arran Webb

    Yes lets vote a banker to be President. That makes sense.

    March 13, 2012 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  5. j williamson

    Romney should be careful with the language he uses at this point. Tick off an opponent and maybe he'll become more determined to stay in the race – win, lose, or draw. Obama doesn't have to say a single negative thing about Romney at this point. Why should he? Santorum and Gingrich are doing it all for him. In the meantime Obama's "numbers" have gone up while Romney's have dropped.

    March 13, 2012 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  6. GordonGecko

    Robotic Willard is going to lose the south

    March 13, 2012 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  7. John Leach

    Mitt Romney is a good one to talk about telling the truth in campaigning. He and his Super-PAC outspend their opponents 10 or 20 to one and flood the airwaves with negative dishonest attack ads. This strategy won't win against Obama and Romney alienates his conservative base by adopting these tactics. If he can't win honestly, he doesn't deserve to be POTUS. Newt is the best choice based on his record, his vision, his debating skills, and his campaign ethics. Go to Newt dot org to find out more. Go Newt!

    March 13, 2012 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  8. Ryan

    I wonder why nobody is investigating Rick Santorum's role in the Penn State Scandal.

    March 13, 2012 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  9. K3Citizen

    Romney smells more desperate than Santorum.

    March 13, 2012 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  10. Just Say No to Flipper

    The more the Rmoney campaign uses the word "desperate" in their communications, the more desperate THEY look.

    March 13, 2012 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  11. Bill in Florida

    This is really rich: Mitt Romney chiding Rick Santorum about not being honest! OMFG!

    March 13, 2012 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  12. Ralf The Dog.

    As a Democrat, I hope, the train wreck goes on, just a bit longer.

    March 13, 2012 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  13. ben

    Wow...this guy is so arrogant.

    March 13, 2012 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  14. Ron

    I am really glad Sentorum is doing bad! I thought Obama was going to have to run against him, whew! no brainer with mitt, Obama will take it in a walk!!

    March 13, 2012 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  15. HamRadioNut

    Santorum is nonsense. Really.

    March 13, 2012 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  16. Texico

    Romey you have no hope of beating Obama......in fact it will not even be close.

    March 13, 2012 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  17. enkephalin07

    Remind Santorum to subtract the exit polls count of Democrats who voted for him.

    March 13, 2012 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  18. BB

    If Gingrinch were to drop out, Santorum would be crushing Romney!!!

    March 13, 2012 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  19. fuzzboxx

    here's a clue Mitt.

    ask Santorum his views on interracial marriage.

    March 14, 2012 08:28 am at 8:28 am |
  20. diridi

    these GOP idiots are clueless. They do not fit for any public-elect-offices. period. nasty idiots.

    March 14, 2012 08:34 am at 8:34 am |
  21. Ferret out the BS

    Bunch of clowns trying to outdo each other in the stupid department.

    March 14, 2012 08:36 am at 8:36 am |
  22. BigD

    Get a clue, Mitzi! Not even Republicans want you.

    March 14, 2012 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  23. Mark

    Romney knows that if Gingrich was not in the race last night it would have been a very bad night for him. Unfortunately, Santorum needed Gingrich out of the race by Michigan to have been able to win the nomination. Santorum would have won Michigan, Ohio, and woul dhave received over 50% in Alabama and maybe in Mississippi. He would have been on Romney's heels with the delegate count and would have all the momentum. All Gingrich is doing is helping the one man he doesn't want to help: Romney. This is what happens when an ego gets in the way.

    March 14, 2012 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  24. stew

    A veteran with P. T. S. D., not a crazed gunman, a veteran who didn't get screened properly by the medical staff of the Army that didn't want our countries soldiers to receive benefits for their war time disabilities.
    Why would anyone vote for the lieing yellow bellied slimey coward calling himself an American

    March 14, 2012 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  25. Cynic

    Santorum wouldn't even have 203 delegates, if there weren't so many Christians turned off by Romney's Mormonism.

    Romney is the GOP's best hope for beating Obama. Santorum is a religious wing-nut, and cannot even PRAY of getting the votes of moderates in the general election. His views are completely out of sync with 90% of the American population. Especially because 90% of the American population LIVE SINFUL LIVES!!!!!! Fornicating for pleasure instead of for procreation, drinking, smoking, enjoying degrading pop culture, wearing revealing clothing, women holding down jobs and competing with their betters (i.e., men), etc. Oh, the horror of it....

    March 14, 2012 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
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