Transcript for Gearing Up for the Iowa Caucuses
A lot of folks around the country it was the ball in Times Square that signaled our entry into a presidential election year but an Iowa. They don't need a ball they've had campaign ads had knowledge of -- in recent weeks but in just a few hours all the attacks. All the jockeying will give way to actual votes Mitt Romney. Is neck and neck with Ron Paul and most of the polls -- Rick Santorum. Has rocketed into the hunt in my co anchor Terry Moran is in Iowa where all of -- Terry. The Republican race here in Iowa has been an absolute roller coaster with conservative voters falling is an out of love with. Every candidate. And when that is except for Mitt Romney. And tonight even while Romney -- in the polls the man of the moment is Rick Santorum. He has. Basically moved -- spent a lot of time here and -- final hours of this campaign it is finally paying off for. We joined him on the trail today. What a difference a week mix act. Just a few days ago Rick Santorum couldn't buying media coverage and could walk into -- event unmolested today we tried to talk to him to take the pulse of his surging campaign. Look ahead the coming contest and got into a crazed media's grown. And senator. Do you think you have that they organizational likes to go for people say that you've spent all your time here but doesn't have been in South Carolina more than any other candidate and campaign I've been second -- -- Washington Post. -- mount Thomas that a New Hampshire would go very very good we've got to get people and homeless when. Tickets -- here. -- -- in the polls give the hard way. Months and months of hard work on the ground meeting voters more than 370. Town meetings. -- every one of Iowa's 99 counties. And for months and months. It got -- nowhere. Rick Santorum a Pennsylvania. You could see of the debates where he was. Almost an afterthought way way off to the side there then just before Christmas I saw -- as a chance to win. Got a couple of key endorsements from influential pastors here years of taking a hard line on social issues like abortion -- gay marriage are paid off. Former senator from Pennsylvania who got creamed in his last campaign -- -- fires here. When did you know this campaign was taking -- You know we we felt -- forget bigger things we're things -- -- felt good the last couple of weeks so Santorum surgeons perfectly timed. But is he just the latest flavor of the month nine. Thank you -- you want he went. Republicans here it may just about everyone in the race a front runner at some point in their apparent quest to find anyone but Mitt Romney did -- Romney boldly declared. -- failed to work don't win this thing. His crowds are big and growing he's got a ton of money and he's been running here for years as we saw firsthand tonight. He ought to do well please welcome Ron Paul. And passion it seems the her friend -- -- Ron Paul is lit up many young people and disaffected voters with his ideologically pure libertarian message. -- -- accepted the idea that the federal government's responsibility was to. Intervene in the economy at Paul's Iowa headquarters it seemed I was the oldest person there everybody around -- -- young. While I believe where it. Going to be the first generation who probably won't do as well as our parents and doctor -- the only candidate who offers us something different freedom as it is a very young idea. We caught up with Paul tonight and he seemed a little non plus by his rock star status. You know one thing that's really striking is. In your crowds and of our young people. They're they're coming out DeRozan their lit up why. And I haven't figured it out -- I believe that young people. Or more open to consistency in principle I think all of us like -- I think all young people. Whether you're a toddler a teenager like independents. -- is ideologically pure as they come and that has led some to wonder if he is a serious candidate for president or kind of libertarian profit. Out to shake the system not govern. When you lay your head down on the -- -- -- you see yourself. In the Oval Office. Not really but I think it's a possibility some time -- -- about it -- that's a risk I take it. And -- an amazing admission from a presidential candidate. And not -- -- hear contempt. And now comes the attacks on -- now that he's doing so well. Including this shockingly cruel comment from liberal pundit Alan Colmes on Fox News describing inaccurately. How Santorum and his wife -- feared dead newborn child in 1996. Like. -- -- -- -- old baby who died right after childbirth -- and played with it. For a couple hours so -- other children would know that the child was real. Here this afternoon at a town hall in Newton Santorum was asked about and we got together and brought Gabrahall witness to -- Nearby his wife Karen west. Those values have gone straight to the heart of -- socially conservative I wouldn't care about -- Roger got on the Santorum train early backing -- Told her what was it like to be a Santorum supporter for all those months when he was it like 12%. Fall. It was tough to see him that -- I want a I want the media wanted to all the meetings say they're missing and it you're missing and it you know you're missing -- you've got to speak with him. Go see him because when you see him you change your mind. So it was hard. But. I felt good in my heart. Whether Iowa conservatives will go to court system or with the man many think has the best chance to beat Barack Obama. That is the question here tonight. Terry thanks to you and below -- -- a lot more 24 hours from right now on a special addition of Nightline your voice. -- -- vote Iowa Caucuses position. Johnson here.
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