Rick Santorum's endorsement splurge
May 16th, 2014
04:49 PM ET
5 months ago

Rick Santorum's endorsement splurge

(CNN) – With key Republican Senate primary showdowns in Georgia and Oregon on tap for next Tuesday and a faceoff in Iowa just a couple of weeks away, Rick Santorum isn't sitting idle.

The former senator from Pennsylvania and 2012 Republican presidential candidate – who's seriously considering another bid for the White House – fired off three endorsements the past two days.

On Wednesday, as first reported by CNN, Santorum backed conservative talk radio host Sam Clovis in the free-for-all Iowa GOP Senate primary. Later that day Santorum gave his support to conservative state Rep. Jason Conger, who's battling a more moderate candidate for the Republican Senate nomination in Oregon. And Thursday, Santorum weighed in on the ugly intra-party fist-fight for the GOP Senate nomination in Georgia, endorsing former state secretary of state Karen Handel.

Santorum made his endorsements through his Patriot Voices PAC, which backs conservative causes and candidates.

Clovis backed Santorum's 2012 presidential campaign, which was fueled by a delayed victory over eventual GOP nominee Mitt Romney in the Iowa caucuses. Clovis currently lags in the latest polls, far behind Iowa state Sen. Joni Ernst and businessman Mark Jacobs. Matthew Whitaker, the former U.S. Attorney for the southern district of Iowa, is also running. If no candidate cracks 35% of the GOP primary vote, the nomination will be decided by around 2,000 delegates at a state party convention.

CNN: Key races to watch in 2014

Handel is one of five major candidates in a bitter primary fight in Georgia. The other candidates are businessman David Perdue and Reps. Phil Gingrey, Paul Broun and Jack Kingston. Handel, Kingston and Perdue, rather than the more conservative Broun and Gingrey, are the names battling for the top spot in the latest public opinion polls.

Since no candidate's expected to top 50%, this contest is all but certain to head to a July 22 runoff between the top two finishers.

In Oregon, a vote-by-mail state, Conger trails in the most recent polls to Portland pediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Monica Wehby.

Complete coverage of the 2014 midterm elections

Two candidates Santorum recently endorsed won victories in Tuesday's primaries.

Midland University President Ben Sasse, a former Bush administration official, came out on top in the Senate GOP primary in Nebraska. In recent weeks Sasse won the backing of Santorum as well as former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, and Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah. Sasse is now the favorite to win November's general election in the race to succeed retiring Republican Sen. Mike Johanns.

And conservative candidate Alex Mooney, who enjoyed Santorum's support, won a wide-open GOP nomination in West Virginia's 2nd Congressional District.

While making primary endorsements can be risky for potential White House contenders, especially one in Iowa, the state that kicks off the presidential caucus and primary calendar, Santorum is not one to play it safe.

But he tells CNN that these endorsements are not about himself, or any 2016 ambitions.

"These endorsements are about the future of this country. If we are going to stop President Obama's agenda and change the direction of this country, we have to elect strong conservatives to the U.S. Senate. I am committed to doing whatever I can to help make that happen," Santorum said.

But he also used the endorsements to mention his new book.

"Many of these candidates are also advocating the same message that is in my book Blue Collar Conservatives. They understand how to move our country forward, and I am pleased to help them take that vision to the U.S. Senate."


Filed under: 2014 • Georgia • Iowa • Oregon • Rick Santorum
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. GOP = Greed Over People

    John, John, did it wwwwaaaaayyyyy better, and without the stupid, condescending smirk.

    May 16, 2014 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  2. SOUTHERN HOTTIE

    "These endorsements are about the future of this country. If we are going to stop President Obama's agenda and change the direction of this country, we have to elect strong conservatives to the U.S. Senate. I am committed to doing whatever I can to help make that happen," Santorum said.
    –from the article

    *********************************************************************************************************************************
    This GOP retread could not even get re-elected in his own state! *facepalm*

    May 16, 2014 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    Rick Santorum may stand for blue collar conservatism(whatever that is), but he'll never get elected because he wants to enforce his own brand of Sharia Law on us.

    May 16, 2014 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  4. Silence DoGood

    @Dutch/Bad Newz, VA – Take Back the House
    Rick Santorum may stand for blue collar conservatism(whatever that is), but he'll never get elected because he wants to enforce his own brand of Sharia Law on us.
    -----------
    Thanks for pointing this out. His recorded stand on converting the country into a religious, possibly theocratic, state is scary and we must preserve real religious freedom. Recently a woman in Sudan was sentenced to death for not accepting the state religion. Be warned – it can happen here!

    May 16, 2014 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  5. dwayne

    Southern Hottie.
    go back to the Bible.
    There is more of a chance of seeing a Space Ship land on your Nose than this Idiot getting elected .

    May 16, 2014 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  6. SOUTHERN HOTTIE

    Sorry, but I just LOVE Rick Santorum. He's an honest, clean cut guy. Good family man too.

    May 16, 2014 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  7. Marie MD

    Biggest idiot clown in the car.

    May 16, 2014 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  8. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Poor Rick! This frothy mix actually believes he is relevant. Maybe 82 year old police commissioners in New Hampshire will vote for him, if they are alive in November!

    May 16, 2014 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  9. Rusty Krus

    Why is this piece of garbage saluting? He did not serve in the military, but sent thousands of our kids to die in Bush's war of lies.

    May 16, 2014 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  10. Chipster

    Santorum couldn't get reelected in PA because he's a such a hypocrite. He campaigned for tort reform to restrict awards while suing his wife's doctor for hundreds of thousands of dollars. He talked about honesty in government and the cost of abusing the system but owned a house in Pa that neither he nor his family resided. At the same time, he was gouging the Commonwealth for a fortune in cyber school fees when they were living in VA, not PA! Add to that the fact that he's a religious fanatic. We do not need the American Taliban in our government.

    May 16, 2014 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  11. ghost

    GOP is history after the 2014 & 2016 elections. Keep the crazies going GOP!

    May 17, 2014 12:52 am at 12:52 am |
  12. Thomas

    Only a loser would drag his 6 kids threw this kind of self absorbed election schedule .

    And when will Rick Santorum " Father Superior " be putting on the cute 50s brand sweater , the one that looks like Ward Cleaver from leave it to beaver ?

    I'm sorry but this guy needs to think more about birth control and less about ruling the planet .

    May 17, 2014 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  13. What's in that Tea Anyway?

    "These endorsements are about the future of this country. If we are going to stop President Obama's agenda and change the direction of this country, we have to elect strong conservatives to the U.S. Senate. I am committed to doing whatever I can to help make that happen," Santorum said.
    –from the article
    --

    What a buffoon...what a ultra-maroon (as bugs bunny used to say). President Obama's agenda is now in its 6th year and the country is recovering from the idiot policies you and the shrub put in place. So your bright idea is to return to another near depression? Good luck with that idiot. You couldn't get elected dog catcher in "powe dunk USA"

    May 17, 2014 10:27 am at 10:27 am |