The Conversation

Santorum Blasts Republicans 'Pushing to Lose' at CPAC

Highlighting the significant differences between the GOP's core activist conservative wing and many of its D.C> politicians, former Sen. and potential 2016 presidential candidate Rick Santorum spent much of his twenty-minute CPAC speech blasting those he accused of wanting to "lose."

“I’ve been watching a little bit of what’s gone on here at CPAC, and I hear a lot of ‘we have to win.’ Now we all know what they mean; they actually mean we have to lose,” Santorum told the crowd at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, saying the party is being told to lose “unfashionable” but “proven” principles.

While Santorum stopped short of naming names, the speech can logically be interpreted as an indictment of both John McCain and Mitt Romney as previous GOP presidential nominees, as well as of N.J. Governor Chris Christie who just yesterday told the CPAC crowd Republican have to "win" before they can govern.

That debate, whether one is more likely to win by abandoning traditional GOP principles, or strongly advocating for them, has been central to much of the back story at this year's CPAC.

“We’re told that we have to put aside what we believe is in the best interest of the country so a Republican candidate can win,” Santorum said. “Now that may result in a win for a Republican candidate, but it will be a devastating loss for America. I don’t know about you, but I’m not out here fighting just to elect Republican candidates and let them win, I’m here to see America win.”


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