Santorum Opposes Additional Early Primaries and Caucuses

By Ali Carey, Contributing Writer

So long February Super Tuesday.  Hello GOP primaries and caucuses in December. The way things are going, the first 2012 Republican primary votes could be cast around Christmas 2011.

Republican Presidential Candidate Rick Santorum is speaking out against his fellow GOP Presidential Candidates who he accuses of trying to frontload the primary schedule.  In an interview for ABC News’ “Subway Series with Jonathon Karl” Santorum described the early primaries and caucuses as “a travesty.”

“This is clearly Mitt Romney and Rick Perry I’m sure, who are very interested in running the clock out and trying to get this vote out as quickly as possible because they’re in a position right now where they have resources and name recognition and the shorter the time frame the less opportunity for other candidates to come up and catch them from behind,” said Santorum.

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney successful lobbied Nevada Republicans to break Republican National Committee Rules and move up their states caucus.  On Wednesday, the Nevada GOP announced the state’s caucus will be held on January 14.

Former Nevada Gov. Bob List told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that “Romney’s people were pushing for us to move into January.”  However, List said that’s not why the final date was chosen.

According to the latest polls, Romney is a front-runner in the Nevada caucus.  Winning Nevada in mid-January could help offset a lost in one of the other early states.

Florida’s GOP recently voted to move that state’s primary to January 31. As more states seek earlier primaries, it becomes increasingly difficult for an outside candidate to compete. A 2012 hopeful like Santorum, with relatively little campaign cash and organizational capacity compared to the top tier candidates, will have little chance to compete. (Sticking up for the traditional early primary states can’t hurt his chances their, either).

New Hampshire and Iowa are considering holding their primary elections and caucuses in December. Santorum is concerned that a caucus the day after Christmas would have a negative impact on the holiday season.

Santorum firmly believes that Christmas is a time to be focused “on the birth of our savior” and not on” someone’s political games that could help them get elected.”

“It undermines the elections by having this very important decision as to who our nominee will be, being done over a period of time when the American public is legitimately distracted from these types of activities,” said Santorum.

Santorum is disappointed with the Republican National Committee (RNC) in regards to enforcing their rules regarding the primary and caucus calendar and he does not support the states that are breaking RNC rules by holding earlier primaries.

“I hope that voters will see that there are a candidate or two that are trying to disrupt the primary process in order to have political advantage.  That is not a good thing for our country,” Santorum said.

“If we are looking at Christmas Eve or Christmas day caucuses or the day after Christmas day caucuses this is a, this is really a travesty for the election nomination process of the president,” Santorum told ABC News.  “Hopefully cooler heads will prevail and we can shift it back. It doesn’t have to go back to the original schedule but at least shift it back until it is out of the holiday period,” said Santorum.

October 7th, 2011 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Presidential, Top Stories | No Comments

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