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by
Bryan Preston

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January 20, 2012 - 7:41 pm

GOP presidential contender Rick Santorum held a gaggle with bloggers in Charleston, SC on the eve of the pivotal South Carolina Republican primary. The former Pennsylvania senator blasted the Iowa Republican Party for first emailing him with the news that he had won the Iowa caucuses, then backing away from that in public statements. Santorum singled out Iowa GOP chairman Matt Strong, calling his party’s process “at first disturbing, then frustrating” that the party called its caucus results “inconclusive” after informing him via email that he had won by 34 votes. He said that the Iowa GOP’s actions had hurt both his campaign and the caucuses themselves.

In the brief but wide-ranging conversation, Santorum said that asking questions about rival contender Newt Gingrich’s personal life are “fair game,” but said the national media have been “despicable” to Santorum for 15 years, and that they are “low lifes” for going into salacious detail about the former speaker’s private life.

Santorum also said that in its present form, he would not vote for the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). He said that he has not been fully briefed but has concerns about the bill, and also has concerns about piracy and protecting intellectual property on the Internet. He added that he “recoils” at the thought that some treat the Internet as a place where anything goes. He said he is concerned about the Internet’s effect on children, noting that he has seven children of his own.

Can he win the nomination without a “ground game?” Santorum said that the rules of campaigning have changed, and that money isn’t buying elections anymore because people aren’t getting their information from attack ads now. They are getting their information from blogs and other online venues. He said that he has a strong “virtual game,” singling out online activist Alice Linahan for helping him develop his online social media campaign. Santorum said that he “feels good” about the South Carolina primary, adding that he is the “only conservative” remaining in the race.

Santorum made his remarks to bloggers gathered at a blog bash organized by Texas conservative activist and strategist Ali Akbar.

 

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.
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