'This Week' Transcript: GOP Candidate Rick Santorum

And by the way, that may not mean the heavy footprint that we have in Afghanistan right now. There may be, as we did when we initially threw the Taliban out, we did so with a few handfuls of troops, I mean, several hundred troops. There's a lot of ways in which we can play and be an effective actor in that country. And certainly I would work with our experts in that area to see what troop op complement we would need, and work with the Afghan government to make sure that we commit to them to be successful, whatever that -- whatever that means, whatever that's necessary to accomplish.

KARL: OK. I want to turn to the economy, give you a chance to respond to something we heard, a pretty extraordinary statement from Mitt Romney about you and about your credentials on the economy. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROMNEY: We're not going to be successful in replacing an economic lightweight if we nominate an economic lightweight. And I'm an economic heavyweight. I know how this economy works. I am going to get it working for the American people because I care about the American people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KARL: OK, so are you an economic lightweight?

(LAUGHTER)

SANTORUM: When a candidate has to tell you he cares about the American people, that tells you something, number one. You can either demonstrate that or you can try to convince them by telling them that.

I think we -- I don't go around telling people I care about them. I show that I care about them, number one, number two -- by the policies and by what I've done in my political career.

Number two, if Mitt Romney's an economic heavyweight, we're in trouble, because we was 47th out of 50 in job creation in the state of Massachusetts when he was governor. He may have had some success at making money for himself and his partners at Bain Capital, and I give him a lot of credit for doing so, but that's a very different thing than going out and creating an atmosphere for people to create -- that create jobs.

And again, for Mitt Romney to say he's the economic heavyweight -- this is a man who doesn't understand conservative principles. Conservatives don't go out there and say, I'm going to create jobs and I'm going to change the economy, I'm going to manage the economy. Just the opposite. What we believe in is getting government out of the way, creating opportunity, and let the private sector do these things.

This is Mitt Romney again, you know, the CEO trying to go in and manage something. We don't need a manager. We need someone who can go in there and transform Washington and get it out of the hair of people in the private sector, reduce regulation, and cut taxes dramatically. We do. He doesn't. His program is, according to the Wall Street Journal, is weak and timid. Ours is bold. They called our plan supply-side economics for the working man, because we talk about getting jobs for everybody in our economy, getting manufacturing jobs back here, growing the energy sector. I was for growing the energy sector and for harvesting the resources in this ground when Mitt Romney was putting caps on CO2 as governor of Massachusetts, and talking about cap-and-trade and imposing all sorts of government regulations on the energy industry.

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