Romney and allies attack Santorum on all fronts
March 29th, 2012
04:10 PM ET
3 years ago

Romney and allies attack Santorum on all fronts

Washington (CNN) - Voters in Wisconsin over the last few days have witnessed a full arsenal assault on Rick Santorum by the Mitt Romney campaign and the super PAC supporting it.

A mailer from Restore Our Future, obtained by CNN, asks "What do you believe is our best path forward?" Above a picture of Romney it says "The American way" and above a picture of Santorum are the words "or the Washington way?"

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The other side of the pamphlet lists contrasts between Romney and Santorum. Romney is called a "conservative businessman" who created thousands of and also eliminated a $3 billion deficit in Massachusetts as governor while Santorum is labeled a "Washington politician" who as senator supported increases to the federal debt ceiling and voted to "spend millions on wasteful pork projects." At the bottom the flier says: "The facts speaks for themselves."

The super PAC also is calling voters in the state attacking Santorum as someone who voted to fund the "ultra liberal pro-abortion Planned Parenthood." That refers to bills he voted for while he was in the U.S. Senate that included money for family planning. Santorum has said while he personally opposed those programs he reluctantly voted for legislation including them because of other things that were included.

The recorded call ends by saying a voter "deserves a leader who stands up for our principles, not a Washington insider."

The Romney campaign also is using robocalls to attack Santorum. One call says "Rick Santorum repeatedly supported big labor bosses" as well as claiming the former Pennsylvania senator "joined liberal Democrats against collective bargaining legislation," apparently referencing his vote in 1996 against right-to-work legislation that would forbid people applying for a job to be forced to join a union. It ends again trying to link Santorum to "big labor bosses."

Obviously, labor issues are a controversial topic in Wisconsin as Republican Governor Scott Walker is facing a recall election after he support a bill to effectively end collective bargaining for public employees.

Santorum has said calling him a friend of big labor is not true.

These lines of attack are coupled with an onslaught of television advertising by both the campaign and super PAC, most of which has been aimed at Santorum.

Restore Our Future's new ad, which started airing this week, uses some of Santorum's own words from a March 19th speech in Moline, Illinois when he said "I don't care what the unemployment rate is going to be. It doesn't matter to me." The commercial also highlights Santorum's votes on the debt ceiling and congressional earmarks.

Santorum's campaign previously had fought back on attacks using the unemployment snippet.

"Rick was making the point that the Santorum campaign is not based solely on unemployment rates – it's based on returning freedom and restoring this country's greatness – and it's a mistake for anyone to try and reduce the idea of America to just the 'economy.' Sadly, Mitt Romney thinks the country and this election should be reduced to math, money and spreadsheets," Santorum Communications Director Hogan Gidley told CNN last week.

Restore Our Future has used not only television and radio ads but robocalls and mailers in many of the previous primaries and caucuses as it has deployed its financial juggernaut to support Romney by touting his record and attack both Santorum and previously Newt Gingrich.

In Wisconsin Romney and his super PAC together are spending about $3,0279,000 while Santorum and the super PAC backing his bid, the Red, White and Blue Fund, so far are putting $810,310 in play, including $100,00 the super PAC just added.

That equates to an approximate 3.75 to 1 spending advantage for Romney and his allies.

The Red, White and Blue fund's ad attacks Romney for raising fees in Massachusetts by over $700 million and that his state's health care reform "served as the blueprint for Obamacare and its 1.7 trillion dollar price tag. We just can't trust Mitt Romney."

Also see:

Rubio endorses Romney, argues GOP should 'come together'

Romney joke draws Democratic criticism

Amid new focus, Gingrich's ire remains the same

CNN Poll: Obama leads Romney and Santorum in November showdowns


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum • Wisconsin
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. GROVER NORQUIST IS A ENEMY OF THE STATE

    "The American way" and above a picture of Santorum are the words "or the Washington way?"
    ---------------------------------------–
    Willard, is it the "American way" to joke and kid about your father shutting down a factory in Michigan and moving the jobs to Wisconsin, leaving 4,000 employees out of work? Is that funy to you? I'd vote for Ayatollah Santorum before I'd even consider uttering your name out of my mouth. At least he can stick to his convictions however off the wall they may be. You are running one of the most negative campaigns ever. How are people supposed to unite around you?

    OBAMA/BIDEN 2012
    ELIZABETH WARREN 2012 & BEYOND

    March 29, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  2. Dave

    and tabby nackle hits him with a right, len a left, now a combo, he s got him against the ropes, an another left & a right, DING, DING, Religious Zealot Rick saved by the bell. He is bleeding profecently. The final roud of 15 starting.........

    March 29, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  3. Data Driven

    So Washington isn't part of America now? If so, why does Romney want to live in the White House?

    Btw, I love that Romney and his allies are spending millions of dollars on a campaign they've already won. Bwa!

    March 29, 2012 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  4. Dave

    Calling salt lake, I need another 50 mill. Ricks almost on the ground. Can a mormon have more $$$$$$$$$$$ for the knockout??

    March 29, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    If you are into money laundering, Mittens is the man. If you think China is where American jobs belong, vote Mittens. If you think that the wealthy pay too much in taxes support Mittens. If you want a war with Iraq, and a cold war with Russia from a clueless moron on foreign policy, Mittens is the one. If you think that a person who evades taxes can fix our debt, vote Mittens. If you would like to see a different position on any topic every day, go with Mittens. If you think flip flops are more than beach wear, vote Mittens.

    March 29, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  6. Dave

    Russia is our biggest foe. What a whackjob!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can a Lds leader try & start another arms race with Russia? Mr Personaily, your killin me!!!!

    March 29, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  7. geg

    he has a good laugh every time a american loses his or her job,he been laughing him self to sleep since reagan

    March 29, 2012 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  8. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    What if Mittens flip flops and say Russia is a people too, and corporations are our number one enemy.

    March 29, 2012 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  9. Dave

    Mitt, Qualification, Washington Insider for the last 20 something years, Guniness world record holder for Earmarks, Bain, Mass, 02 Games, Gov spending, Lots, BILLIONS & BILLIONS & BILLIONS for the Mormon 02 games in Salt Lake, Taking MILIONS & MILLIONS & MILLIONS from THe US for bain only to embezzle that money right into Bains Mormon Pockets while destroying HUNDREDS of Thousands of Jobs & sending them to China, Fiscal common sence, Raping The Us Gov for money & giving it To Bains Mormons & goimg back for anothe 3 quarters BILLION from the US Gov & calling it SAVING the Games. & Finally Responsible Governing, THATS EASY, just a hint of what we about to see if LDS Commander in Chief is put in place, RUSSIA IS ARE # 1 FOE. Lets get my Mormon Billionaires more Billions & start another arms race with Russis. What a SEVERE whackjob , God help us if Mr Personality Wins comes Nov

    March 29, 2012 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  10. cali girl

    Robmey is just trying to keep the heat off of himself. Gaffes this week: Russia is our biggestfoe, a cold war is still on. And the kicker, Robmey hired a lobbyist to protest his interest in the elevators for his 4 car garage.
    Here is proof he is not relating at all to most Americans, except for the 1% who suggested he get the elevators for his cars.

    March 29, 2012 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  11. Mr. Izz

    Russia is stopping the U.S. from getting more actively involved in many countries in the Middle East. They are more or less supporting the Syria regime, and yet people call Romney out for saying Russia is our geopolitical foe? I think he's right. Russia has ties to all sorts of countries that have terrible reputations, and support their actions. The U.S. wants to step in and do something, but their hands are tied. Hmmm... maybe we'll be more "flexible" in November.

    Or, have you all just decided to feast upon what the media throws at you?

    March 29, 2012 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  12. Dave

    Qualification, money landeren overseas to caymans, draft dodgin, earmark takin job killin & sending overseas to chiana, Stupid remarkin, Russia is our biggest foe, You guys got another couple of weeks for me to discuss Mr Personalitys Qualifications, Let me Know He has more skelrtons that a graveyard!!!

    March 29, 2012 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  13. BigTBone

    Let's see... wealthy, hypocritical religious whackjob on a moral patrol or the uberwealthy, flip-flopping, religious cult following robot who doesn't know how he feels about an issue until after he's been on both sides of it?

    At least Obama acts like he cares about more than just rich white zealots. Straight (D) ticket this year in response to 2010's cluster___.

    March 29, 2012 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  14. FRANK - LAS VEGAS

    Little Ricky does have a hard time defending his non-conservative ways doesn't he. He claims it's a lie when people quote him or bring up his past actions. He even gets made and swears if he's ever asked about his own exact words. But then again there's Mitt who changes with the wind. there's only one man in the race who wants to help the middle class and that's President Obama. just today the GOP senators stopped the proposal to end big oil tax give away, now why do you think that might be? To help the middle class, I think not.

    March 29, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  15. cashmeremafia

    All they have to say is Santorum tried to hide the fact he lived in VA most of his 2nd term in the senate; he got busted when some reporters went to his PA house and discovered it had been unoccupied for quite some time. The clincher is he accused his opponent of the same thing when he first ran.

    March 29, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  16. Dave

    WORD, Big T Bone. Im pullin nothin but D s . Enough with These Rich, Richer & Richest!!!!!!!!!!

    March 29, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  17. No Way I'll Vote for Romney

    I don't think Romney has a soul. He is used to getting whatever he wants and will try to destroy anyone or anything that gets in his way. He did the same at Bain, it's all about having a super ego. He is nothing but a snake oil salesman. The majority of us are more intelligent than he thinks.

    March 29, 2012 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  18. once upon a horse

    they better watch out calling Rick Santorum out on such things.......he may go get one of his kids and confront Romney in front of them and start cussing again! Then blame that on the media of course.

    March 29, 2012 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  19. Just Say No to Flipper

    Rmoney sounds a bit desperate, as do his parasitic neocon enablers wringing their hands about an undecided convention.

    March 29, 2012 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  20. Dave

    Mr Izz you have about as much chance of winning these over people as Huntsman Sr donating his profits from the CLAW to the NAACP!!!!!!!!!!!1

    March 29, 2012 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  21. Dave

    WORD, no way ILL vote for Romney. He is a Vicious, non carin bout regulr folk , Spineless when it comes to Womans Integrity, Job Killin, SEVERLY plastic human being. Yea Im with You, Mr Personality has no soul. NOTTHIN BUT D s COME NOV!!!!!!!!!!

    March 29, 2012 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  22. diridi

    both are fools of this nation....o.k, no one has any idea, nor charisma...

    March 29, 2012 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |