Rick Santorum Catches Up to Mitt Romney in National Polls

The former Pennsylvania senator is the newest not-Mitt.

Posted: 02/14/2012 06:21 PM EST
Rick Santorum Mitt Romney

Following a string of surprising wins last week, Rick Santorum, the scrappy former senator from Pennsylvania, is teaching the genteel Mitt Romney a very tough lesson: Money won’t buy you GOP love.


In four new polls from Gallup, the Pew Research Center, CBS News/New York Times and CNN, the two White House hopefuls are statistically tied. Months after the start of this topsy-turvy race, the only constant message from Republican voters has been: We’re still not that into you, Mitt Romney.


His response, of course, with the aid of trusty super PAC sidekick Restore Our Future, will be to money bomb Santorum with negative advertising, which could be a big risk. The kind of conservatives that support Santorum are the very ones that Romney desperately wants to win over, and they don’t like ugly. His wealth is already a turnoff and cause for distrust.


But according to a Buzzfeed report, the Romney campaign is planning to take out Santorum by charging that he’s never run anything and painting him as a Washington insider who during his time in the Senate voted to raise the nation’s debt ceiling bringing home some federal bacon to spur his state’s economy.


“The expectation is that Santorum, just given his personality, is going to whine like crazy about this," a Romney campaign aide gleefully told the Web site. 


Or, like the blue collar, junkyard dog he boasts of being, Santorum will more likely counterattack and could bite out an even bigger chunk of that socially conservative electorate Romney so craves.


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