In a surprise move, Mitt Romney announced today that he is ending his presidential campaign and throwing his support behind Rick Santorum. The move shocked observers, including Senator Santorum, as Governor Romney seemed poised for a decisive victory in Wisconsin.
The governor, however, said he concluded that he has “no chance” to win the general election in December and that a Santorum candidacy in 2012 would be in the “best interest of the party.”
He explained, “It will save time. As many observers have pointed out, my defeat in 2012 will be interpreted by the party faithful as evidence that our problem is that we’ve become too pragmatic and moderate. In 2016, we’ll ˜correct™ that and nominate some right-wing nut and get demolished in the general election.
It’ll be like Goldwater in 1964. I don’t want to wait until 2020 to get my party back. I’m all about efficiency. Let’s get our butts kicked now and move on.”
When asked if he was worried that a Santorum thrashing in 2012 would also cause GOP losses in Congress, Romney said, “sure, but many of the losers will be those Tea Party nuts. If they go back home, Congress may actually be able to get some work done for the American people.”
The governor also said that he “wasnt really troubled” at the prospect that a Democratic Congress and President Obama would guarantee the survival of the presidents health reform.
“Look, I invented Obamacare and Im proud of it. If Id been the candidate in 2008, that would have been my signature issue, and Id have won. 98 percent of people in Massachusetts have health insurance. Its ridiculous that my party thinks its just fine for 50 million Americans to lack health insurance, access to preventive care, and all that. We can spend the next four years thinking about how to improve on health reform, rather than sabotage it.”
Senator Santorum said that he was “gratified, I think, at the governors endorsement.
Newt Gingich pointed out that he is still in the race and expects to prevail at the GOP convention in August.