Things Rick Santorum used to say

It’s debate day – today the remaining major candidates will debate in Arizona, days before the Arizona and Michigan primaries. There hasn’t been a debate in a while, something that one could rarely write before this month, and the landscape has shifted dramatically since Santorum swept Colorado, Missouri, and Minnesota. He is now the front-runner and the cash is flowing into his coffers, while Romney is spending down his reserves at a fast rate which should scare both his supporters now and hurt his ability to run a strong campaign if he is the nominee.

But with a new debate and his new status as front runner, the research books are opening up on Rick Santorum. Huffington Post reported yesterday that Santorum was pro-choice before he entered politics.

In a December 1995 Philadelphia Magazine article — which the Huffington Post pulled from Temple University archives — Santorum conceded that he “was basically pro-choice all my life, until I ran for Congress… But it had never been something I thought about.” Asked why he changed his mind, he said that he “sat down and read the literature. Scientific literature,” only to correct himself and note that religion was a part of it too.

Huffington Post also reported on campaign statements from 1990 which showed Santorum as what would today amount to being a moderate Republican on abortion. This is fairly surprising given Santorum’s culture warrior bonafides. As a result, we can expect this line of attack to be raised in tonight’s debate.

In a slightly more bizarre edition of “Thinks Rick Santorum Used to Say,” the Drudge Report is quoting Santorum more recently at the far other end of the culture war. The quote allegedly comes from a 2008 speech at a college in Florida:

“Satan has his sights on the United States of America!” Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum has declared.
“Satan is attacking the great institutions of America, using those great vices of pride, vanity, and sensuality as the root to attack all of the strong plants that has so deeply rooted in the American tradition.”

This sounds a lot more like the Santorum that we now know, so I don’t know that it would do much to turn off the Republican voters who are trending his way. But this sort of rhetoric is exactly the type of thing that would likely ensure that nominee Santorum would lose in historic fashion, which is, incidentally, the elite Republican critique of him.


Matt Browner-Hamlin is a blogger & political strategist based in Washington, DC. He has written about US politics since 2004. He's worked on presidential and Senate campaigns, in the labor movement and the Tibetan independence movement. He is the founder of OccupyOurHomes.org and currently spends much of his time fighting Wall Street banks. Matt on Google+, and his .

Share This Post

© 2014 AMERICAblog News. All rights reserved. · Entries RSS