« Of Gas Prices and Unintended Consequences | Main | Implications Of The Ryan Budget »

April 10, 2012

Santorum Suspends His Campaign

In a news conference this afternoon, former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum announced that he was suspending his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

Mr. Santorum was the last viable challenger to Mr. Romney, and his decision to exit the race marks the unofficial end of the Republicans' months-long, highly combative primary. Mr. Romney has yet to gather the 1,144 convention delegates needed to win the nomination, but it is unlikely that the remaining challengers, Newt Gingrich and Rep. Ron Paul, can prevent him from doing so.

Mr. Romney congratulated Mr. Santorum on his campaign, calling him an "able and worthy opponent," according to the Associated Press.

It's my opinion that this is the best time for Rick Santorum to make this announcement.  There was no chance that he was going to win more delegates than Mitt Romney in the remaining primaries, never mind win enough to secure the nomination.   Santorum's only significant impact on the race going forward would have been to draw down Romney's war chest.  That's money Romney needs in the general election campaign against Barack Obama. 

The country does not need to be saved from Mitt Romney, as Santorum seemed to imply.  What we need is to save from Barack Obama and the Democrats.  Unfortunately, Santorum was not likely to succeed in doing it — in my view, anyway.

In spite of all that, Rick Santorum deserves congratulations for running a surprisingly strong campaign, and providing voice for the hopes of a significant block of conservative voters.  Because of his strength in the primaries it's likely he'll play a significant role going forward, whether it is by helping to shape the party platform, or perhaps by taking a position in a new administration.  In any case, now is the time for Republicans to coalesce.

Early on in the Republican debates I had this fantasy about a Republican campaign in which the presidential contenders continued their campaigns on behalf of the eventual Republican nominee.  Newt Gingrich recently said that he was planning to do just that.  Maybe my fantasy will be real.

Posted by Tom Bowler at 04:27 PM | Permalink

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451ece669e2016764e70773970b

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Santorum Suspends His Campaign:

Comments

You appear to be writing off Gingrich and Paul completely. There might be a sizeable faction of Santorum backers who were there just because they didn't like the idea of Magic Underwear, and would go either to Mr. Adultery or Mr. Constitution since Mr. Clean is no longer available. And Santorum himself does have some delegates to throw either way.

Posted by: TX CHL Instructor | Apr 10, 2012 4:48:28 PM

Writing them off? Not really. My hope is that they will play significant roles in shaping the party platform (also hoping that they will focus more on liberty and economic issues than on social issues), and maybe even that they will be part of a Romney administration.

Both Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich know that continuing the primary battle is more likely to end in the re-election of Obama than the nomination of a Mitt Romney alternative.

Posted by: Tom Bowler | Apr 12, 2012 8:32:50 AM