May 12th, 2012
08:32 AM ET
2 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. 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 mor.ality 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, and 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 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  2. Anonymous

    Please; use "discrimination" as a "weapon" to push a false-Christian agenda. Christ is embarrassed by current evangelic "leaders"

    May 12, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  3. DiatribesAndOvations.com

    No one is more out of touch than Santorum. His fairy tale eutopia Doesnt exist in the reality where the rest of us live.

    May 12, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  4. Esperito vamos

    Someone's out of touch. It's not Obama.

    May 12, 2012 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  5. Ralph M

    If anyone is "out of touch" it is Romney.
    He still refuses to believe that there are unemployed people who are so because jobs lost are not coming back.
    His idea is to lay people off or fire them to make a company profitable. Take out a loan on it, then sell it off along with the debt so it is someone else's problem and pocket the profits.
    Who will be the new owner of our country when he sells it off?

    May 12, 2012 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  6. Zoey

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

    Which value should we hear about? How about the bullying he did in high school which is more than just good ole fun, it's a character flaw that most don't grow out of or maybe we should talk about his disregard for his dog when he drove around with him in a cage on the roof of his car because he was SICK. Last but certainly not least let's talk about his VERY CLOSE relationship with the prime minister of Israel "Bibi" Netanyahu. Bibi has mentioned more than a couple of times that Israel would never strike Iran first because he would just get the Americans to do it and as everybody knows another war is certainly what our economy needs to say nothing about all that wonderful bloodshed.

    Romney should be the laughing stock of the Republican party not their candidate for President.

    What a joke!

    May 12, 2012 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  7. Suchabigmouth

    Santorum is the one who is out of touch with the true America. Those small minded bigots from the South and midwest do not reflect the American value of inclusion.

    May 12, 2012 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  8. ken

    It's more like a wet noodle.

    May 12, 2012 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  9. John

    Time to run the liberal heads into the ground. America voted out the worthless blaming democrats last election. Shut the liberal cry babies up.

    May 12, 2012 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  10. Brandon

    Wake up America! Gay marriage is a natural right. You should be able to love whom ever you love no matter what race, gender, ect, ect, ect......

    May 12, 2012 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  11. Troy Hilton

    Has that moron seen the latest polls concerning this issue. Hes out of touch!

    May 12, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  12. olharl

    Mr. Romney is going to just have to lurch toward the center. Cultivating friends like Rick and the horrible Liberty University may be to his taste, but it's self-destructive politics. If he doesn't cut loose the social conservatives, he's going to have to try to look centrist while out among the "unwashed masses" and then look like a staunch neo-Bircher Koch Brothers tool while among such tools. If he can sustain this level of hypocrisy he will have to be the greatest political talent in American politics for the last 100 years. God save his wretched torn up soul.

    May 12, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  13. newtonfig

    proof again that santorum is a lowly demagogue only interested in pushing his religion and social "values" on the rest of America. no interest in economy or health care, mortages or the wars- the stuff american's are most concerned about right now. just another trojan horse being rolled up to washington for all the so called Christans to swarm out and save our society from progress

    May 12, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  14. Captain Obvious

    It would appear that Rick Sanitorium still has not figured out why he lost the primary.

    Go ahead Willard, shake the etchasketch again.

    May 12, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  15. LCSWquilter

    I would love for Romney to follow the extreme advice of Rick Santorum so the election would be handed over to Obama.

    May 12, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  16. Alex

    So to Santorum, it's not just okay to demonize, victimize and discriminate against gays. It's just fine to use them as a political talking point and weapon. Wow, what a good little christian he is. Why the obsession with gays Rick? Me thinks the lady doth protest too much.

    May 12, 2012 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  17. Ryan

    Um, Values of America? have changed. We are not living in the 1950's where being "gay" was a disease and people were lynched and murdered for the way they looked or acted. What values? Excuse me Rick Santorum but you're a Class A idiot if you think that America has ever had a set of values. Call upon all the women who have been beaten by their husbands and been forced to keep quiet over it. Church of Christ values? HAHA Church of Christ are a complete hypocritical society, they think they are Christians but they are the first to judge you, because they think they walk in the light of "God" haha!. Honestly American Values are, "LIFE", "PROSPERITY" and "HAPPINESS" if you try to deny anyone those values then you deny your own rights and values as an American. Roll that up and smoke a fat one.

    May 12, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  18. Joe

    Santorum is a bigot!

    May 12, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  19. Michael Q

    The Stone Age remains the rock solid foundation of an out-of-touch modern Republican Party. (All puns intended)

    May 12, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  20. Dan Halen

    Does this man not realize that these types of remarks are the very reason he was REJECTED by his own party for the nomination? He needs to just go and crawl back under his rock.

    May 12, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  21. alberta treadway

    Santorum doesn't understand that the President of the United States has to be the President for "ALL", not just the few that they agree on religion,morals,marriage or standards! HOW others live their lifes is not concern of any one alse UNLESS it hurts some one or is unlawfull. After hearing About Romney Attack with a group of boys upon a boy in High school an cutting off his hair because they thought he was Gay would NOT be a good time for Romney to be taking a stand against the GAY community---an confirming he is a Gay Basher.

    May 12, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  22. bobcats

    In other words just be negative, attack the candidate, divide the American people. And you wonder why so many people have become disgusted with politics and politicians.

    May 12, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  23. OuTofToucH

    If not being a bigot means you're out of touch with "American values" then thankfully I'm out of touch.

    May 12, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  24. JohnS

    This is a joke, right? Rick Santorum calling Obama out of touch with the values of America?!?! Excuse me for the pun, but this is the pot calling the kettle black!

    May 12, 2012 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  25. tony

    Ahhhh . So religion is WEAPON!!!. Not what Jesus Christ said, if my Bible is to be believed. Get thou behind us Satan-um.

    May 12, 2012 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
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