Santorum's late night Romney endorsement, via email
May 8th, 2012
08:15 AM ET
2 years ago

Santorum's late night Romney endorsement, via email

(CNN) – There was no press conference, no television cameras, no reporters and it didn't even arrive when the sun was up.

Instead, Rick Santorum's endorsement of presumptive Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney came in paragraph 13 in an email to supporters at approximately 11 p.m. Monday night.

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"We both agree that President Obama must be defeated. The task will not be easy. It will require all hands on deck if our nominee is to be victorious," Santorum wrote. "Governor Romney will be that nominee and he has my endorsement and support to win this the most critical election of our lifetime."

With that, Santorum became the latest former rival to back Romney and the latest former rival to do so in a lukewarm fashion. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich offered a far from ringing endorsement of Romney during a press conference last week, during which he painted the frontrunner as a positive alternative to President Barack Obama.

Santorum said he waited to make an endorsement until he could meet with Romney in person. The two met privately Friday in Pittsburgh.

"I felt that it was completely impossible for me to even consider an endorsement until after a meeting to discuss issues critical to those of us who often feel our voices are not heard by the establishment: social conservatives, tea-party supporters, lower and middle income working families," Santorum wrote.

However, he did not say whether he planned to join Romney on the stump before the November election.

Santorum enjoyed support from more conservative voting blocs as well as members those supportive of the grassroots tea party movement during the primary campaign, which helped him place first in 11 early contest states. In Monday's letter, Santorum said he encouraged Romney to "add more conservative leaders as an integral part of his team."

The former Pennsylvania senator said the contentious 2012 campaign proved he and the former Massachusetts governor "have some differences," but also areas in which they agree, including over the need for smaller government, opposition to abortion and the belief that marriage should be between one man and one woman.

One of the biggest gripes Santorum had on the campaign trail with Romney was the health care law he passed while governor of Massachusetts, but in Monday's note Santorum said he no longer doubts Romney's opposition to the current national health care law.

"While I had concerns about Governor Romney making a case as a candidate about fighting against Obamacare, I have no doubt if elected he will work with a Republican Congress to repeal it and replace it with a bottom up, patient, not government, driven system," Santorum wrote.

Romney expressed "sincere gratitude" for Santorum's endorsement and said his "commitment to conservatism energized millions of Republicans around the country," in a statement released Tuesday.

"Senator Santorum and I share an absolute commitment to that goal, just as we share an absolute commitment to reversing the failing policies of the Obama Administration, from its assault on freedom of conscience to its feckless foreign policy," Romney said.

Also see:

Soros donates $1 million to liberal super PAC

White House downplays Biden's same-sex marriage remarks

Poll: Romney, Obama dead even in dozen swing states


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum
soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. Jerry

    How can this moronic idiot have had aspirations to the US presidency?! And, I am a life-long Democrat. Go figure...

    May 8, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  2. Harrison

    What a little baby

    May 8, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  3. mklsgl

    Hey John Boehner and Mitch McConnell would be excellent candidates for POTUS! Ha!

    May 8, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  4. The Real Tom Paine

    Another tepid, limp endorsement for the failed 1-term governor of MA. Can't wait to see how Paul ultimately delivers his endorsement, or if he even bothers.

    May 8, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  5. CGDoc

    What a Coward

    May 8, 2012 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  6. abe

    What a way to endorse someone via e-mail. This shows you he has no high regards for Romney and he is not comfortable to even come out in public , stand next to him and endorse him. Rick is not happy he still not in the race and has a low expectation in Romney's abilities to run our country. this endorsement does not paint a good picture for the Republican party.

    May 8, 2012 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  7. Tammy

    So IF Romney wins the big White House, who will republicans blame for the screwed up state this country will be in when casting ballots for the 2016 race? Thanks republicans and tea partiers for helping make America MORE divided AND in shambles....

    May 8, 2012 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  8. gg

    if you like MADE IN CHINA mitts your man

    May 8, 2012 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  9. You heard it worst on CNN

    You may as well endorse Obama Rick. Romney dosent have what it takes to beat him and you know it! This just proves you are a flip flop as well. We won't forget. More importantly we won't let YOU forget!!! Don't bother running again Rick. You are as phoney as your new friend.

    May 8, 2012 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  10. ObamaJoe

    Poor guy,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,he knows Mitt will not be able to win,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

    May 8, 2012 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  11. rodriguez

    republicansforObama2012...

    May 8, 2012 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  12. ObamaJoe

    God bless America,,

    God bless President Obama :)

    May 8, 2012 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  13. Beverly - NYC

    An e-mail endorsement, seriously Rick, I guess it will be easier to retract later when Mitt loses and you have to say see I told you so.

    May 8, 2012 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  14. kendra

    Who cares. Both Romney and Satanorum are crazy anyway. Never going to happen!

    May 8, 2012 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  15. ptw

    He simply does not want to get caught on video endorsing Romney because it would come back to haunt him in future election campaigns.

    May 8, 2012 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
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