Rick Santorum Celebrates Louisiana Victory in Wisconsin

Mar 24, 2012 10:58pm
ap santorum2 tk 120324 wblog Rick Santorum Celebrates Louisiana Victory in Wisconsin

(Jae C. Hong/Ap Photo)

GREEN BAY, Wis. — Miles away in Packers country, Rick Santorum watched the Louisiana Republican primary night returns at the Titletown Brewery in Green Bay and took to the podium to thank Louisiana voters for their support while looking forward to the race in Wisconsin.

“To the people of Louisiana, thank you very much. You have come through and come through in a big way,” Santorum said. “I just want to thank you for making a very clear and crisp statement and that is you don’t believe as the pundits have said that this race is over. You didn’t get the memo. We’re still here. We’re still fighting.

“This race is long and far from over, and to the people of Wisconsin, I just say to you — ‘On Wisconsin! Let’s get it done!’” Santorum said.

Santorum continued to capitalize off Romney’s response to his campaign’s Etch-a-Sketch gaffe, arguing that the former Massachusetts governor simply poses as a conservative while Santorum truly is one.

“Just a couple of weeks ago, this race was within just couple of points, within the margin of error and we went down and talked about being the strong and true conservative in this race,” he said. “We talked about how we had a candidate who didn’t have their public policy positions sketched on an Etch-a-Sketch, but it was sketched on our hearts because I’m not running as a conservative candidate for president. I am the conservative candidate for president.”

A spokesman for Romney attempted to attend the Santorum primary night watch party in Wisconsin, but was asked to leave by Santorum’s staff.

“Rick Santorum is like a football team celebrating a field goal when they are losing by seven touchdowns with less than a minute left in the game. His attempts to distract from his listless campaign and the conservative backlash caused by his suggestion that keeping President Obama would be better than electing a Republican are becoming sadder and more pathetic by the day,” Ryan Williams, a spokesman for Romney who sat in the downstairs restaurant during the victory party, e-mailed reporters after Santorum spoke.

Santorum received a congratulatory phone call from Romney while he ate a burger and drank a beer at the brewery.

Hours before polls closed in Louisiana, Santorum joked at a rally in Bellevue that he would welcome Romney’s resignation from the race after the results from Louisiana.

“The Wall Street Journal referred to our plan as supply side economics for the working man. And it said it was a bold plan. They referred to somebody else’s plan who may be running up here in Wisconsin unless he drops out after Louisiana — Mitt Romney,” Santorum said. “If he might drop out, I’m not suggesting for the press that he drop out, but if he wants to I’ll certainly accept his resignation. You know, after you’ve outspent your opponent about 50 to 1 and you still can’t put the race away, at some point you might want to say, ‘You know, maybe I can’t win after all.’”

Santorum chided the Romney campaign again for its Etch-a-Sketch gaffe, even labeling their operation as “kind of pathetic” for using such a phrase.

“You may be familiar with this child’s toy. What I didn’t know is that Governor Romney wrote his public policy on these things,” Santorum said as he waved the children’s toy on stage. “I don’t write mine on an Etch-a-Sketch. I articulate clearly with conviction what I believe and why I believe it. I don’t have a teleprompter with me or consultants with me telling me what to say in six-minute speeches. I have found that on occasion that can get you into trouble because you don’t say things exactly the way you want to say them. But it’s sort of pathetic for a campaign to run a campaign around an inarticulate phrase when they should be running their campaign based on what they believe in what they can do for America.”

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