January 26th, 2012
12:40 PM ET
9 years ago

Santorum guarantees he's a candidate 'for a long time'

Tallahassee, Florida (CNN) - Rick Santorum guaranteed that he was committed to his presidential campaign Thursday, stating he knows the origin of rumors to the contrary.

"I know where they're coming from, they're coming from the other camps," Santorum told reporters after a town hall at Florida State University. "I get that. I don't think you've heard me say anything other than what I've said. I guarantee you. I guarantee you we're going to be in this race for a long time."

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No other campaigns have reached out to him and directly asked him to drop out, he said, but "it wouldn't matter if it did." With his prospects of winning any delegates in winner-take-all Florida looking pretty slim, Santorum hinted that he might even move on to Colorado or Nevada before the Florida primary is in the books.

"We can't let grass grow," Santorum said, of his plans for Tuesday night's primary. "One of the things that we even debated in South Carolina whether to stick around because South Carolina election day was sort of a wasted day for us. It's really not a day you can campaign because everybody's – you want your staff all deployed and getting people out to vote."

With Nevada's caucus scheduled just four days after Florida's, and Colorado, Minnesota and Missouri just three days after that, Santorum said his campaign might decide his time is best spent elsewhere.

"We just thought we got to start planting our flag and going to those next states on Tuesday instead of standing here and doing a celebration in a state where the election's over," he said.

As for which of the upcoming states he feels best positioned in, Santorum said that his campaign already has staff on the ground in Colorado and Nevada, as well as "a lot of folks helping" in Missouri. He said that they are less focused on the more moderate states of Minnesota and Maine – which hold their contests on February 11.

"You can't win an election unless you're in the race and we're going to stay in the race," Santorum concluded. "And we believe that the dynamics of this race – if there's anything that it's shown. We've never had three winners. We've never had the dynamism where we've had eight leaders. And this race is constantly changing. South Carolina changed like that in the last few days before and we believe that dynamic is still very present and once all the hype from all these candidates starts to die down and people start to get serious about who they want to go up against Barack Obama, we feel very good."

Also see:

Obama shares intense encounter with Arizona governor

Gingrich shoots for the moon

Bachmann will run for reelection

Filed under: 2012 • Florida • Rick Santorum
soundoff (20 Responses)
  1. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    A long time or a cabinet position, whichever comes first.

    January 26, 2012 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  2. ShawnDH

    Santorum is so creepy. I'm amazed that even a single person would think he should/could be PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. He's obviously a deranged extremist theocrat with a mindset more Taliban than American.

    January 26, 2012 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  3. Truth and Nothing But the Truth

    Well, that's good news for Romney! But Newt is sure going to be PO'd.

    January 26, 2012 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  4. A Texan

    Power--- It`s the strongest aphrodesiac known.......

    January 26, 2012 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  5. Marie MD

    You poor Ricky. You can be a candidate until the day you take your last breath. President? Never!

    January 26, 2012 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  6. Phil in KC

    For a long time or until he comes in 4th in the next conservative state. He won't make it to Super Tuesday.

    January 26, 2012 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    instead of standing here and doing a celebration in a state where the election's over," he said.
    And what exactly would YOU be celebrating?
    What a joke.

    January 26, 2012 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    He should stay in it. But, let's see how long he hangs once debate season is over. He loses his biggest source of visibility and free TV time. He has to pin his hopes on a complete Gingrich collapse. I don't think a Romney collapse would do it for Santorum. I wouldn't expect that folks who like Romney would like Santorum.

    January 26, 2012 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  9. sensible

    Some people just don't know when they aren't wanted!
    He's just like a stray cat that found some food at your back door.

    January 26, 2012 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  10. anagram_kid

    Candidate for a long time – maybe, elected official – never again.

    January 26, 2012 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |

    Rick, this is your calling, you will always be a candidate never POTUS, I am pleased you recognize that.

    January 26, 2012 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  12. GI Joe

    Yep, and as he keeps stirring up his christian hypocrisy and allows misleading crap to go on, it just gets frothier and frothier.

    January 26, 2012 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  13. Jake

    good!! looking forward to him, Newt & Romney beating the crap out of eachother until NOBODY will cast a vote for any of them!

    January 26, 2012 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  14. Pollopa

    Where else is he going to make this kind of money, and get this much attention?

    January 26, 2012 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  15. cali girl

    Great news for Santo. However, what are his plans for saving the country from debt? For Foreing Issues? For National security? For Taxes? For Healthcare? For govenrment involovement? For Womens Rights? For Prayer in Schools? For Immigration? For Natural Disasters? For Terrorists?
    He will say he does not like the other candidates ideas, but I am still waiting to hear his.

    January 26, 2012 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  16. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Wire Palladin, S. F.

    A long time or a cabinet position, whichever comes first
    A long time.

    January 26, 2012 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  17. Rudy NYC

    Truth and Nothing But the Truth wrote:

    Well, that's good news for Romney! But Newt is sure going to be PO'd.
    Think about it. It's good news for Pres. Obama, and bad news for the eventual Republican nominee, whomever that will turn out to be. I am sure Mitt Romney would rather be walking around, looking all smug, having won the first three contests just waiting to be coronated. But hey, things did't go according to plan.

    No, this is not good news for Romney. You've disappointed your fan base.

    January 26, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  18. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    pretty Ricky must be bored with nothing else to do because since Iowa it appears not too many are paying attetion to whatever he's selling. As far as those folks shouting VP at that Newt rally a few days ago, I doubt if that is going to happen either.

    January 26, 2012 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  19. Greg

    Santorum is not on the ballot in Virginia, Illinois, and Washington DC and does not qualify for all of the delegates in Tennessee and Ohio. Gingrich is not on the ballot in Virginia and Missouri and does not qualify for all of the delegates in Tennessee. Neither has the ground game or resources to compete in the upcoming caucus states either. One estimate (though it may be a little biased and slightly high) has them missing out on over 500 possible delegates. Even if it is half that, it is a big handicap with only 2286 delegates available. There are only two candidates that are eligible to get every available delegate, and only two candidates with organized national campaigns and the resources to make it to the national convention. It's time to be realistic and get behind a candidate that actually has the ability to get the nomination. Gingrich and Santorum are running for cabinet positions, book sales, and speaking fees right now

    January 26, 2012 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  20. WhereIsPalin

    If he can bring in the money, he can be a candidate forever.

    January 26, 2012 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |