Potential GOP Presidential Candidates Make 2010 Election Rounds

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 27, 2010   |   11:49AM   |   Washington, DC

The potential Republican presidential candidates who may challenge pro-abortion President Barack Obama are not shy about making the rounds on the 2010 campaign trail.

The election cycle has seen political action committees sponsored by such potential candidates as Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin and Tim Pawlenty dish out endorsements and big bucks for candidates ranging from Congress to the state legislature.

The potential presidential hopefuls are employing a standard practice of developing a cadre of support and potential endorsements in key primary and caucus states that could help them as they seek the GOP nomination to take on Obama.

Romney, the former Massachusetts governor who campaigned as a pro-life candidate in 2008, is heading to Iowa and New Hampshire, the first caucus and primary state, to campaign for a range of candidates. He will also head to South Carolina, the site of the third big primary election contest.

Pawlenty, the pro-life Minnesota governor, pro-life former Sen. Rick Santorum and pro-life Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who upset pro-life advocates with a call for a truce on abortion, are also making the rounds in Iowa this week.

Barbour will also stop in New Hampshire for GOP gubernatorial candidate John Stephen and Pawlenty will appear twice in Minnesota on behalf of Tom Emmer, the pro-life gubernatorial candidate.

Santorum is heading to South Carolina to help candidates as will pro-life former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, whose PAC has been active helping candidates, and pro-life former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Some other potential candidates have schedules that pale in comparison.

Sens. John Thune of South Dakota and Jim DeMint of South Carolina, both pro-life, and pro-life Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana all have schedules seeing them campaign for candidates in their home states but not in Iowa or New Hampshire, according to The Hill.

Gov. Mitch Daniels, another possible 2012 candidate who also advocated a truce, has no campaigning scheduled.

Palin is not doing as much campaigning right now, though she has helped selected candidates with appearances throughout the election cycle and her endorsements have made the difference in some key primary election campaigns such as Senate races in New Hampshire and Delaware.

Grover Norquist, a pro-life and anti-tax activist, told The Hill that candidates campaigning for others comes at a risk. If their candidates lose, their status as a political heavyweight is put under the microscope.

“If you can’t do that [win those races], it’s tough to make the case for a promotion,” he said. “I think most of the candidates are working fairly seriously at trying to help elect other people.”