May 12th, 2012
08:32 AM ET
3 years ago

Santorum to Romney: 'Step up' and use 'potent weapon' of same sex marriage

Washington (CNN) – Rick Santorum is urging Mitt Romney to "step up" and weaponize the issue of same-sex marriage.

"This is a very potent weapon, if you will, for Governor Romney if he's willing to step up and take advantage of a president who is very much out of touch with the values of America," Santorum said in an eye-opening live interview with Arkansas TV station KARK, a CNN affiliate.

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The former presidential candidate made the remarks before appearing at the Benton County Republican Lincoln Day Dinner in the northwest corner of the state Friday night. Santorum's comments also came the night before Romney's speech before the Christian conservative Liberty University in Virginia on Saturday.

Romney's one time rival noted the recent results of a ballot issue in North Carolina where voters approved a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

"Hopefully Governor Romney will continue to stand tall for his position on this issue and understand how detrimental it would be for society for it to have this changed," Santorum also told the Arkansas station.

"Governor Romney has to talk about his values," he added. "That's the most important thing."

On Wednesday, President Obama stated his support for same-sex marriage in reversal of his stance on the sensitive issue. Following the president's comments, Romney seemed hesitant to take on what he called a "tender" subject, though he did reiterate his view that marriage should be between a man and a woman.

Santorum's remarks also indicate the former Pennsylvania senator is not fully on board Romney's team. After a bitter primary season battle, Santorum endorsed Romney in a lengthy email to his supporters. But Santorum did not actually state his endorsement until the tail end of the message.

When asked whether he would be interested in running as Romney's running mate, Santorum demurred.

"It's one thing you don't campaign for – at least I'm not campaigning for," Santorum said.


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (615 Responses)
  1. Cosmos42

    Oh I hope Mitt Romney does decide to heed Santorum's advice. Then Obama's re-election will be all but guaranteed.

    May 12, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  2. bob

    America has lost it's moral values... it's ridiculous... just to get votes....

    May 12, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  3. AJ

    A disgusting strategy from a disgusting candidate. If the GOP go down this road they deserved to be pummelled at the polls.

    May 12, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  4. Ikramuddin Akbar

    I dont know how many children P.Obama has what i have to say is if his daughter marries a woman and and his son marries a man, would he be happy ever and would that be according to law of nature.If you go against nature ,nature will destroy you.Human beings are on this planet to obey nature and nature says multiply yourself. Had it been the rule of God to allow human beings to act whatever their limited mind wants,He would have produced only Adam not Eve.Adam was enough,and from him a lot of Adam.

    May 12, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  5. Anonymous

    i don't think Romney wants to go there.

    May 12, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  6. TomCom

    You can't discriminate, period! It's like saying Mormons can't marry. We will look back at these times like we do with civil rights inm the 60's.

    May 12, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  7. Jeff Edelman

    Rick Santorum is completely on the wrong side of history on this issue, and so many others. By the time he runs again in 2016, millions of new voters who support gay marriage will come of age and millions of older people who do not support it will have died. And millions of others will come to support gay marriage over the next four years. Ronald Reagan would have been branded a moderate and chased from today's GOP. With the economy still a mess, a moderate, more traditional Republican would probably win in a landslide. Instead, the Republicans will lose and Obama will be re-elected because the crazies have taken over the party and the Republican party has shown it is unfit to govern.

    May 12, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  8. Nancy Bair

    Oh, I do soooo hope that Romney takes advice from this LOSER!

    May 12, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  9. Sean

    Playing politics...

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  10. Ohio For Obama

    why would rick even give away a attack like that.. Now Obama's admin will step up and shut Romney blows dwn... smh white men dnt know how to lay low and pounce

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  11. SixDegrees

    Why would anyone take advice from a hate-filled, theocratic bigot?

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  12. mikrik13

    An attempt to give America a haircut against its will.

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  13. Nolan Wooley

    No Rick Santorum.. You are out of touch with the American people.. Which is why you will never be president.

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  14. bookgirl

    According to the polls, half of Americans favor the president's position. How, then, can "Assrectum" say that Obama is out of touch with American values? This is classic Republican rhetoric, dismissing all Americans that don't agree with them. Sort of like they behave in their religious views. They define the term "narrow-minded ".

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  15. eldono

    This isn't about "values". It's about hate and people being legitimately different. Why are we so afraid of things that are different?

    May 12, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  16. NKBL

    I think Santorum is out of touch. This is 2012, not 1912, and it's time for people to stop dictating to others on how to live their lives.

    May 12, 2012 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  17. hurley

    Those creatures are the part of america WITHOUT values! RIP GOP!

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  18. Colin

    I would take Obama’s progressive 21st Century position any day over the position of a man who, in the 21st Century, gets his morality from a 2,000 year old book of Palestinian mythology and honestly believes that the World is 6,000 years old and began with one man, one woman and a talking snake, that all 7 billion human beings are being supervised 24/7 by an “all loving” god who reads his mind whenever he prays.

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  19. Pablo695

    Santorium is right about one thing – that HE is out of touch with America.

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  20. sparky

    Yes Willard. PLEASE listen to man-on-dog. Use it, traditional marriage belief is the minority. Use that as a weapon!

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  21. Anonymous

    our Government is mess up. And the people are paying for it. We need to start thinking first of U.S.A. Wish they would wake up or lose this great nation. The people running our government our do it for there money in there pocket. They dont care about the little people. THEY CARE ABOUT THEMSELF.

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  22. HarvardLaw92

    This is exactly what the DNC is hoping / praying that he'll do.

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  23. Roscoe Chait

    Typical f...ing politicians. Attack the president because he is standing up for human rights. Romney and Santorum should have lived in the 1500s. That's where they belong with their backward, hillbilly ideas.

    May 12, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  24. ZarGoth

    Yes, Santorum is correct: the "most important thing" to do is to use intolerance as a political weapon...

    Thanks, dude!

    May 12, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  25. llinmpls

    I always think a good idea is to take advice from a loser. Santorum obviously has his finger on somebody's pulse, that's why he is still in the Presidential race. Stick to your Russian guns Rommey, show America that you can bully someone, that should get you about 48 percent of the vote, just enough to lose.

    May 12, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
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