Santorum Reflects on ‘Going Zero to 60′ in the Polls

Jan 2, 2012 1:00pm

ABC News’ Shushannah Walshe reports:

POLK CITY, Iowa – Riding a wave of last-minute momentum in Iowa, Rick Santorum told a packed restaurant here today that “going zero to 60 in polls” has helped his campaign raise more money in the past six days than he has amassed in the past six months.

Repeating a refrain he has been using for the past few days, Santorum told the audience, “I’m asking you to not settle” on another candidate; a not-so-veiled reference to rival Mitt Romney.

“Do not defer your judgment to the pundits and to the polls,” Santorum said, adding that the so-called pundits think that Iowa voters “only care about babies and guns.”

Iowans want “a president that’s solid on all the issues,” he added.

On the final full day of campaigning before the caucuses, Santorum today cast himself as a candidate who would be exactly that kind of president.

The former Pennsylvania senator’s growing strength in Iowa has been evident all week, and it was again this morning with a crush of media and voters filing the Reising Sun Café wall-to-wall.

A sign on the wall noted the room’s capacity was 49, but there were at least 100 people in the restaurant. Santorum offered Iowans a shortened version of his stump speech, pushing the electability argument hard.

Santorum told the crowd he often gets asked, “Can you go out and raise the money” to be competitive in other early nomination states? “Yes,” he replied, “if you can help us.”

Another sign of Santorum’s new position near the top of the polls in Iowa: He’s getting some help from Jim Bob Duggar and members of his family (19 children, in all) who have been featured in a TLC reality-television show.

Duggar showed up at Santorum’s first event of the day along with 12 of his kids in tow in a bus wrapped with “Rick Santorum for President” signage. (All week long, Santorum has been chauffeured around the state in a pick-up truck driven by one of his top Iowa supporters, and he continues to on Monday.)

“I will take those results tomorrow night,” Santorum said as he wrapped up his remarks in Polk City, “and I will have the comfort of knowing that Iowa did their job, and we’ll go on from there based on what the people of Iowa have said and be very happy about doing that.”

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