Wintery Knight

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150 evangelical leaders agree to endorse Rick Santorum after two-day conference

Rick Santorum Iowa Caucuses

Rick Santorum Iowa Caucuses

From Life News.

Excerpt:

After a Friday-Saturday meeting with more than 150 leaders and representatives of evangelical, pro-family and pro-life groups, the organizations have declared consensus support for Rick Santorum’s Republican presidential campaign.

Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council and a participant in last night’s private meeting, addressed a press conference call today to provide additional information about the decision and expected endorsements from some of those attending.

Perkins said the leaders of the evangelical groups came to the meeting each supporting the various different GOP candidates seeking to replace pro-abortion President Barack Obama. Participants engaged in a question and answer session with representatives of each of the campaigns, except for former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, who did not send a spokesman to the event.

After the session, the leaders discussed the presidential race amongst themselves and then undertook a three-round ballot process. Perkins said the discussion culminated in an agreement that the groups and leaders each have “an overriding passion and desire to defeat Barack Obama” this November. Although the leaders of the various organizations strongly support various candidates, they eventually decided to support Santorum.

“I think it was vigorous discussion of who they felt best represented the conservative movement and who they think had the best chance of succeeding,” he said, but adding that there would not be a “coordinated effort” amongst the groups and leaders to endorse Santorum.

“There is a hope and expectation that those represented by the constituency will make a difference in South Carolina,” he said, adding that some in attendance threw their support behind Santorum to avoid having a repeat of 2008 where conservative candidates split the vote.

Perkins indicated Santorum, Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry but only Gingrich and Santorum made the final ballot. There were 114 votes on the final ballot, as some leaders had to catch returning flights home, and Santorum emerged with a majority (85) of those voting, the FRC president said.

[...]The names and groups participating were not released, but Perkins mentioned former Republican presidential candidate Gary Bauer as another organizer of the private meeting. He said the names of organizations and leaders participating will become public as they begin making endorsements.

[...]Last week, the pro-life group CatholicVote issued an endorsement for Santorum.

Bauer has already endorsed Santorum. I agree that Gingrich is definitely the runner-up, and would be a fine choice for conservatives, but Santorum really is the best overall. My biggest concern about this is how younger evangelicals are so apathetic when it comes to politics and have no idea how to think carefully about things like free market capitalism, abortion, marriage and peace through strength. The young evangelicals are largely illiterate, making their decisions based on emotions and intuitions, because they think that Christianity is about being “nice” so that more people like them. Oh well.

What I find interesting is when even moderate conservative bloggers – ones who are not evangelical – are beginning to notice that there is an integrity argument for Rick Santorum.

Look at this comment from Jeff Goldstein – he’s replying to some Ron Paul person, I guess:

BMoe –

We’ve talked at length about this here, so if you haven’t already done so, I’d say go back and look at the various riffs on how Santorum’s ideas of family as the unit of individual autonomy is tied to his Catholicism / Thomism. Also, how family communitarianism is not at all like collectivism.

My own belief — and James Pethokoukis took this up, as well (I believe I did a post on it), is that Santorum is reacting in the excerpt on individualism you cite, to the Objectivists — those whose ideological foundation is Rand. That is, the libertarians. You may disagree with Santorum — and there’s plenty of room to do so — but it does no good to caricature the belief. Santorum is not a collectivist. And his ideas about the family — and government’s role in nurturing that unit — amount to things like increased tax credits for producing new citizens, or increased credit for charitable giving, so that charity is taken away from the state.

And he tries to balance his own views with the constraints placed on elected officials by the Constitution, which for Santorum includes the 9th and 10th Amendments.

These are often difficult waters to traverse. But with Santorum, he tells you what he thinks and believes. For me, that’s a net positive.

Romney mouths platitudes about limited government, and yet it’s clear he doesn’t believe a word of it. Santorum believes in a social safety net for the truly disadvantaged and indigent, but he tempers that with an animus toward those who would game the system — and toward programs that have the net impact of institutionalizing dependence on government.

What I liked about Cain — he didn’t have all the answers, because he hasn’t studied every question — I like about Santorum. You can see his thinking. He shows his work.

And a bit later, same guy:

Also, BMoe, I think it pretty obvious by now I’m not a social conservative. I’m just far less bothered by them then I used to be back when I was given to accepting the caricature of such creatures.

Nowadays I see that it is the “liberal” secularists who are far more dangerous, because their God is the State, and they therefore serve their God by granting that ever more power comes from the State.

The religious folk simply want the state to leave them the f**k alone, often times. And me and my spaghetti bulbs tend to commiserate.

I think that’s right. I am not thrilled with Santorum’s blue-collar worker economic plan. I’m an investor and a white collar software engineer. I’m chaste and have no children and no plans to marry, so Santorum’s tripling of the tax deduction for children won’t help me. But what is appealing about the man is his vision: he wants more working families and he wants them to face less financial pressure if they have more children, and more choice in education. I get that. It’s not applicable to me, but I get it. I get what his vision is.

Rick Santorum at the Values Voters Summit

Here’s a 3-part speech by Rick Santorum at the Family Research Council:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

The Family Research Council is my third favorite think tank, behind the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute.

Here’s something to read if you can’t see the speech.

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One Response

  1. Thanks for posting this! AWESOME!

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