People tend to remember public figures by virtue of the last prominent thing that they did. Before he ran for office, the last thing that happened to Rick Santorum was he was defeated for the Senate, and prior to his defeat in the Senate he had endorsed Arlen Specter over Pat Toomey, and this did not sit well with Republican conservative primary voters who did not like Specter at all, but that was what Santorum had to do. You’re a sitting member of the party, a combatant is running for reelection, it’s part of the protocol of the business. But people said, “We don’t want standard operating procedure. We want mavericks,” and this kind of thing.

I didn’t hold it against him. I understood that’s what he’s doing, but a lot of people, that’s the last memory, so he’s got that to overcome. Then he’s got the presumed nominee status of Romney to overcome. He’s got the name recognition status of Romney and Gingrich to overcome. There are a lot of real-life factors that weigh into this that have nothing to do with him. It has to do with Romney, you know, this is his second go round running for president, he’s a sitting governor, former governor of Massachusetts, Newt, Speaker of the House. These people all have prominent name recognition. So Santorum and Bachmann both had to do something to overcome that in all of these debates and stand out, get noticed somehow, and that’s always a crapshoot. You need so many things to fall right.

If he runs for president again he’s gonna be that much ahead of the game the next time around if he does it. This is his first time. But on the substance and the issues and the policy, there’s one thing I know about Santorum, and I look at the endgame of this. The campaign is one thing and the troubles that people have, but I know that if Rick Santorum were elected president, I wouldn’t have one doubt any day what he would be fighting for, not one. And it would be great if he could get there. I totally agree with you about that.

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