This has GOT to be the best news of this young campaign season. It's music to my ears!
"In Iowa, both Romney and Paul are each up five points among likely caucus goers from a CNN/Time/ORC poll conducted at the start of December. The new survey indicates that Santorum, the former senator from Pennsylvania, is at 16% support, up 11 points from the beginning of the month, with Gingrich at 14%, down from 33% in the previous poll. Since
Gingrich's rise late last month and early this month in both national and early voting state surveys, he's come under attack by many of the rival campaigns.
According to the survey, 11% are backing Texas Gov. Rick Perry, 9% are supporting Rep Michele Bachmann, and 1% are backing former Utah Gov. and former ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, who's spending nearly all his time campaigning in New Hampshire.
Santorum is campaigning on a shoestring budget, but he's visited all of Iowa's 99 counties and has made a strong pitch towards social conservative voters, who are very influential here in Iowa on the Republican side. Wednesday Santorum was up with a new radio spot on Hawkeye State airwaves touting endorsements by social conservative leaders. His pitch may be starting to pay off.
"Most of Santorum's gains have come among likely caucus participants who are born-again or evangelical, and he now tops the list among that crucial voting bloc, with support from 22% of born-agains compared to 18% for Paul, 16% for Romney, and 14% for Gingrich," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland."
Cain, Bachmann, Perry, Romney and even Gingrich and Paul have had their moment in the sun and surged in the polls, if even briefly, why not Santorum?If youre a conservative and you have a long checklist of conservatives you want in a candidate, Santorum would have alot of checkmarks next to his name. I don't think for one moment that there is a 'perfect' candidate, you can always find something wrong with someone's record. But Santorum has been consistently conservative on a variety of issues.
".. a lot of folks who are very concerned that between Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry and myself, that we're going to split the conservative vote and someone like a Gingrich or a Romney or now even a Paul could end up winning the Iowa caucuses, and we could be left with someone who's not particularly conservative as the standard bearer of the party.
And there were a lot of conversations. Several people called me and said, would you consider maybe getting out and supporting someone else? And we're going to call the others and do the same.
My response to that is let the people of Iowa vote. This race isn't going to be over
after one caucus. This is a long process.
Let the people decide who the best person to carry the conservative banner is. I believe that they are going to select me, and I feel very confident about that. But you know what? If it's somebody else, that's fine." Rick Santorum, 12/21/11 Link