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March 20th, 2012
 

Santorum: Romney Provides No Hope, No Promise, No Vision

DIXON, IL – Rick Santorum campaigned across Illinois on Monday in advance of the state’s primary. After campaigning in Louisiana on Sunday, Santorum made stops in Rockford, Dixon, Moline, and Peoria on the eve of the Illinois primary. Polls indicate that Romney has a lead in the state, but as we have seen in recent primaries, lower than expected turnout can render the polls meaningless.

Santorum’s second stop of the day was in Dixon, the childhood home of Ronald Reagan. The clouds parted for Santorum’s noon hour rally that featured him in front on a statue of a young Reagan riding a horse. The crowd of nearly 1000 people extended up South Hennepin Avenue, which also goes by the name of Reagan Way.

Santorum said that the weather would prevent him from delivering his standard speech, but with the rain holding off, his speech lasted around 45 minutes. Instead of his typical speech, Santorum focused his remarks on Reagan’s three-legged stool of conservatism free enterprise, strong defense, and pro-family social policies. He spoke about the need for America to have a strong military. He castigated President Obama for wanting to cut a trillion dollars from the defense budget, and the president’s weak posture on the world stage.

When talking about free enterprise, he focused on how Obamacare strips individuals’ personal liberty by making them dependent on the government for the most important thing in their life, their health. In addition to criticizing the President’s healthcare plan, he also took aim at his Republican rival, Mitt Romney. Santorum asked the crowd why Republicans would want to give away the most critical issue in this election by nominating Romney, who created a top-down, government mandated healthcare system in Massachusetts. Santorum talked about pro-family policies throughout his remarks.

Santorum’s toughest words for his chief opponent came when he was talking about how much he is getting out spent by Romney in the state. Recent reports show that Romney is outspending Santorum 10 to 1 across the state, but 21 to 1 in the Chicagoland area. Santorum said that Republicans need a candidate who stands on the pillars of the modern Republican Party that Reagan built.

“Ronald Reagan painted a picture of who we are and where we came from, not by ripping down his opponents,” Santorum said. “Reagan ran against an incumbent Republican president in 1976, and they called him ‘too conservative’ and thus unable to win a general election because Republicans were not comfortable running on those issues,” Santorum added. He then said that he’s not running against an incumbent Republican president, but a candidate who is uncomfortable with the current issues because he’s not a conservative.

Santorum then added, “Mitt Romney is outspending me 8 to 1, 10 to 1, who knows? All of it tearing down his opponents. In doing so, he offers no hope, no promise, and no vision.” Santorum then told the crowd that they could still have a conservative nominee, if they reach out to their friends and neighbors and support him in tomorrow’s primary. Santorum made a similar pitch in front of raucous crowd of 300 to 400 people in Moline later in the afternoon before heading to Peoria for an evening rally.

The media has made Illinois’ primary out to be a key contest between Santorum and Romney. With 69 delegates up for grabs, the contest is important, but winning in Illinois was always going to be difficult for the Santorum Campaign. Romney is likely to win tonight in Illinois, mainly due to his past performance in metropolitan areas like Chicago, which is bolstered by his ability run millions of dollars of TV ads in the expensive Chicago media market.

Regardless of the outcome tonight, Santorum’s campaign is showing no signs of slowing down, and the passion of his supporters who show up at campaign events seems to be growing. In Moline, Santorum admitted that his campaign isn’t like other traditional campaigns, but the passionate support he seems to be generating in states is an indication that voters like his nontraditional approach.

Photo by Dave Davidson – Prezography.com

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About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson is the founder and editor-in-chief of TheIowaRepublican.com, a political news and commentary site he launched in March of 2009. Robinson’s political analysis is respected across party lines, which has allowed him to build a good rapport with journalist across the country. Robinson has also been featured on Iowa Public Television’s Iowa Press, ABC’s This Week, and other local television and radio programs. Campaign’s & Elections Magazine recognized Robinson as one of the top influencers of the 2012 Iowa Caucuses. A 2013 Politico article sited Robinson and TheIowaRepublican.com as the “premier example” of Republican operatives across the country starting up their own political news sites. His website has been repeatedly praised as the best political blog in Iowa by the Washington Post, and in January of 2015, Politico included him on the list of local reporters that matter in the early presidential states. Robinson got his first taste of Iowa politics in 1999 while serving as Steve Forbes’ southeast Iowa field coordinator where he was responsible for organizing 27 Iowa counties. In 2007, Robinson served as the Political Director of the Republican Party of Iowa where he was responsible for organizing the 2007 Iowa Straw Poll and the 2008 First-in-the-Nation Iowa Caucuses. Following the caucuses, he created his own political news and commentary site, TheIowaRepublcian.com. Robinson is also the President of Global Intermediate, a national mail and political communications firm with offices in West Des Moines, Iowa, and Washington, D.C. Robinson utilizes his fundraising and communications background to service Global’s growing client roster with digital and print marketing. Robinson is a native of Goose Lake, Iowa, and a 1999 graduate of St. Ambrose University in Davenport, where he earned degrees in history and political science. Robinson lives in Ankeny, Iowa, with his wife, Amanda, and son, Luke. He is an active member of the Lutheran Church of Hope.




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