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Santorum Campaign Ends, Career Resurrected Santorum Campaign Ends, Career Resurrected

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N2K Presidential Race

Santorum Campaign Ends, Career Resurrected

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Rick Santorum(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

He was the insider-turned-outsider upon whom the Republican Party’s restive wing, after flirtations with a string of suitors, hung its final hopes for staving off yet another victory for the party establishment. And, in the end, Rick Santorum went the way of all those would-be insurgency-backed nominees. On Tuesday, multiple news outlets reported he was suspending his campaign.

Mitt Romney’s money and machinery – and, to a lesser extent, his message – proved overwhelming in the face of each challenge. Santorum, who best articulated the fire-and-brimstone tone that animates the GOP’s passions, was the last roadblock for Romney and had been disregarded as a legitimate threat to win the nomination weeks ago.

Tuesday’s announcement, to be sure, reflects the illness of Santorum’s 3-year-old daughter, Bella. But the hard electoral facts amassed against the former senator from Pennsylvania were undeniable.

Santorum’s performance has resuscitated a political career all but ended by the 17-point loss he suffered to Robert Casey in 2006. And if Romney goes the way of his immediate successor as GOP nominee, suffering a decisive loss to a man many Republicans still view as an illegitimate president, Santorum will be there on the other side of Election Day, with the same answer he delivered against scornful criticism of middle-class Americans who cling to their guns and their religion: “Damn right.”

-- Jim O’Sullivan
@JOSullivanNatJo

NATIONAL JOURNAL
’S PRIMARY REPORT

Romney Finally Gets His Title: Presumptive Republican Nominee
[National Journal, 4/10/12] Rick Santorum’s sudden decision to suspend his campaign on Tuesday has finally cleared a path to the Republican presidential nomination for Romney and gives him a free pass to focus entirely on President Obama, as National Journal's Alex Roarty writes.

 

Why Santorum Decided To Call It Quits NEW!
[ABC, 4/10/12] There were a number of variables that Santorum considered before dropping out -- including the fact that Texas wasn't going to become a winner-take-all primary and Gingrich was staying in the race -- but ABC's Michael Falcone reports that Santorums's uphill battle in Pennsylvania was likely not one of them.

How No One Broke The Santorum Dropout Story
[BuzzFeed, 4/10/12] A mistaken tweet from a Bloomberg News reporter attributed the Santorum scoop to the Washington Post -- before the Post had reported it. BuzzFeed tracks the spread of false news that turned out to be true after the fact.

What Happens to Rick Santorum’s Delegates? NEW!
[Washington Post, 4/10/12] Santorum won 11 states, and with them 281 delegates to the Republican National Convention this summer. Most of those delegates are stuck with the candidate, however, unless he releases them during the convention.

 

Republicans React to Santorum Suspending Campaign
[CNN, 4/10/12] Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, called Santorum's decision to suspend his campaign "commendable," and he and the remaining GOP candidates congratulated Santorum for running such an impressive campaign.

Why Rick Santorum Surrendered In Gettysburg
[Washington Post, 4/10/12] The place where Santorum announced the suspension of his campaign was a conscious choice that the candidate wants to shape how his campaign will be evaluated, now that it’s over.

Huge Gender Gap Powers Obama Lead Over Romney
[National Journal, 4/10/12] A new national poll confirms that President Obama's lead over Romney is now powered largely by an overwhelming preference for the president among socially liberal, well-educated women. National Journal’s Ron Brownstein weighs in on the challenge that Romney faces among members of this group.

Santorum's Early Success Pushed GOP to the Right NEW!
[Associated Press, 4/10/12] Because Santorum ran as a starkly conservative candidate in comparison to Romney, many polarizing social issues came to the forefront of the political debate even as the GOP establishment hoped to appeal to center-right moderates in an election year when independent voters could make all the difference.

 

Your Favorite Vice: Hotline’s Veepstakes Power Rankings  
[National Journal, 4/10/12] Hotline takes a look at the top candidates for the GOP’s No. 2 slot. Buzz around Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., is up as buzz around Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has taken a nose dive – but there is still room for a surprise candidate to emerge.

Obama Pushes Buffett Rule, Strikes ‘Fairness’ Theme
[National Journal, 4/10/12] Democrats and the White House intend to use next week’s expected Senate vote on the “Buffett rule” to strike familiar partisan themes, painting the GOP as supporting tax loopholes and low rates for the wealthy – and honing in on Romney’s wealth and low tax rate. But National Journal’s Jill Lawrence writes that Dems are divided amongst themselves on the issue, while Ryan said on Tuesday that people mistakenly think the Buffett rule is "budget pixie dust."

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Gingrich: I Should Tattoo ‘All the Way to Tampa’ on My Forehead
[BuzzFeed, 4/10/12] Gingrich swears that he’s not dropping out – he’s just not campaigning that much. But now that Santorum is out of the race, the former House speaker will face new pressure to end his campaign.

Santorum Exit Opens Endorsement Floodgate for Romney NEW!
[National Journal, 4/10/12] With Santorum's exit from the race, a Romney nomination seems all but assured. That makes it safe for previously unaffiliated Republicans -- like Govs. Terry Branstad of Iowa, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, and Rick Scott of Florida and Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania -- to come out in support of Romney.

Cain Says He’ll Support Romney
[National Journal, 4/10/12] Former presidential candidate Herman Cain said on Tuesday that he will support Romney for president, despite his endorsement of Newt Gingrich earlier this year.

Tax Day Promises More Scrutiny For Romney
[Wall Street Journal, 4/9/12] Romney sought to quell a brewing firestorm earlier this year by releasing his competed tax return for 2010 and a projected estimate for 2011. But as Tax Day approaches, the Obama camp is going after the GOP front-runner for not producing tax returns from decades ago. 

Gingrich Makes Play for Santorum Supporters NEW!
[National Journal, 4/10/12] Gingrich attempted to fundraise off of Santorum's exit from the race, appealing to supporters to give to "the last conservative standing."

Obama Holds Key Lead on Romney as Economy Malaise Looms  
[Washington Post, 4/10/12] According to a new Washington Post/ABC News poll, Obama holds clear advantages over Romney on personal attributes and a number of key issues, but remains vulnerable to the GOP frontrunner on the economy.

A Long-Time Friendship Could Hurt Rubio
[Politico, 4/9/12] Sen. Marco Rubio tops many V.P. lists, but he’s also giving a full-throated endorsement to his long-time political friend David Rivera, a Republican congressman facing state and federal inquiries stemming from his conduct in the Florida legislature. The friendship could backfire as Rubio tries to put forward a squeaky-clean image.

Romney To Campaign In Connecticut, Rhode Island  
[Hartford Courant, 4/9/12] This looks to be the first time Romney has actually campaigned in the Nutmeg State, but the front-runner already has a small army of fundraisers, including the top echelon of GOP money-raisers in Connecticut.

Foster Friess, Santorum’s Millionaire Backer, Swings to Romney NEW!
[Politico, 4/10/12] Now that Santorum has suspended his campaign, his biggest backers -- including Friess, who contributed $1.7 to Santorum's efforts -- are free to back another candidate.

For Romney and RNC, a Waiting Game  
[New York Times, 4/10/12] The Republican National Committee is bound by tradition to remain neutral until Romney is officially the party’s nominee – which means Romney might not be able to merge his operations with the RNC until May or June, putting him at a severe disadvantage against Obama. That is, unless the officials decide to break with tradition.

Romney is the GOP Nominee -- Now What?
[Washington Post, 4/9/12] The Fix's Chris Cillizza has some suggestions for Romney: sit down with national media, put Ann Romney out front, find a way to talk about Mormonism, get an answer on health care, and find somewhere to break with conservatives.

Romney Calls Santorum 'Important Voice' in GOP NEW!
[National Journal, 4/10/12] Romney praised Santorum at a campaign stop in Delaware, perhaps in an attempt to keep his formal rival close enough to have Santorum stump for him later this fall, as Romney said he "look[s] forward to Santorum's work in helping assure victories for Republicans" in November.

Texas A&M Students Realistic About Paul’s Chances Ahead of Rally
[The Battalion, 4/9/12]  Expect another big crowd of enthusiastic youngsters on Tuesday night, as Ron Paul is set to hold a rally at Texas A&M. Students interviewed are realistic about the candidate’s chances, but nevertheless say that the ideas he has injected into the campaign will resonate no matter the outcome.

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