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The Gazette KCRG
Posted August 2, 2011
Santorum hoping Iowans “shake things up” by supporting him in next week’s GOP straw poll

DES MOINES – Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum said Tuesday that next week’s GOP straw poll in Ames will offer social conservatives in Iowa a chance to “shake things up” in the 2012 campaign.

Appearing on a WHO-AM radio talk show, Santorum said his candidacy is generally being ignored by the national media and he is not investing in paid media in Iowa like other GOP competitors, but he expressed confidence that his 50-city Iowa tour currently under way is generating support that he hopes translates into votes for him in the Aug. 13 poll — a major fundraising tool for the Republican Party of Iowa that also is viewed as an early indication of a campaign’s organizational strength in advance of next year’s first-in-the-nation Iowa precinct caucuses.

“You in Iowa can make a statement,” Santorum told the radio audience.

“This is an opportunity for Iowa to shake things up, to put someone in the mix, to pop someone out there who’s not getting a lot of national attention, to say that we want an authentic, genuine conservative who’s tough, who can hold Barack Obama to account, who can beat Democratic incumbents, who can beat in tough states – that’s what we’re looking for and that’s what you have,” he said.

 “Just give us a vote here at the straw poll and I think you’ll see things get mixed up quite a bit and all for the good in our chances to beat Barack Obama,” he added.

During a radio interview that was sandwiched among five other campaign stops Tuesday, the former Pennsylvania senator and congressman pushed for federal constitutional amendments to balance the budget and define marriage as between one man and one woman, and he called for abolishing the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and replacing it with two or three small circuits and new judges to “send a message” against judicial activism.

Also Tuesday, Santorum took some shots at GOP presidential rivals in the U.S. House for their lack of leadership in the national debt-ceiling debate.

“I commend Speaker (John) Boehner, Leader (Mitch) McConnell, and the conservative leadership for moving the ball in the right direction,” he said in a statement.

“Unfortunately, this deal does not go far enough and it is not one that would have been made by a Santorum administration because it does not accomplish the necessary goal of balancing the budget. It is also disappointing that those members of Congress who want to be our president were not leaders in the legislature to advance the conservative cause,” he added. “As president, I will be committed to passing a balanced budget amendment to once and for all ensure we never again put our nation’s fiscal health in jeopardy.”

If elected to be the next U.S. president, Santorum said he would “go on a mission” to pass a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would limit government to 18 percent of gross domestic product, which he contended has been the historical average since World War II but has grown to 40 percent under Obama’s leadership.

“People want a principled conservative that they can trust to do what they say and be able to beat Obama,” said Santorum, who touted himself as the only GOP presidential candidate who has beaten a Democratic incumbent not once but three times in Pennsylvania.

 

Comments: (515) 243-7220; rod.boshart@sourcemedia.net

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