Santorum Captures Endorsement From Catholic Pro-Life Group

Politics   Steven Ertelt   Jan 5, 2012   |   2:51PM    Washington, DC

A national pro-life organization for Catholics issued an endorsement today for Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum, who shocked the nation on Tuesday night with his surprise close second place finish in the Iowa caucuses.

CatholicVote.org, a leading national grassroots Catholic advocacy organization, said it “proudly” endorses Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator who is now shown second in the national polls.

“Pennsylvania Rick Santorum represents our best hope to rally the nation behind a unified moral and economic vision that Americans are clamoring for in a President,’ said Brian Burch, the president of CatholicVote. “CatholicVote.org is proud to stand with Rick Santorum, and is prepared to mobilize our rapidly-growing grassroots network to help secure him the GOP nomination, and ultimately win the White House.”

“Catholic voters are looking for a candidate who can successfully combine the principles of the dignity of life and the dignity of work,” Burch said. “Senator Santorum understands better than any other candidate the profound link between the moral, cultural and economic principles foundational to the success of America.  We are convinced that Rick Santorum is the candidate best equipped to win not only the political arguments, but also the hearts of American voters as he did in Iowa on Tuesday.”

“Rick Santorum is a workingman’s Republican with a record and a plan which are especially appealing to Catholic voters.  His record in Pennsylvania, and his record as a presidential candidate confirms that Senator Santorum understands why four more years of President Obama would be devastating for America, but also why a GOP message focused too heavily on taxes, spending, and debt is simply not enough,” Burch continued.

“Too often our debates on ‘social issues’ are fought at the margins with stale-talking points which pit economic justice and moral virtues against each other.  The candidacy of Rick Santorum represents a chance to present an integrated approach to voters who are hungry for this kind of message,” he said.

The endorsement is a significant one because pro-life voters are currently divided on the candidates — with leading Republican Mitt Romney not strongly pro-life enough for some voters and others split between candidates such as Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry.

Burch said the pro-life issue and concern about judges are paramount for pro-life Catholic voters. In fact, with the Supreme Court teetering on a 5-4 pro-abortion majority, the outcome of the 2012 presidential election could determine the future of abortion law for decades.

“Catholic voters looking for moral and economic leadership also understand that the 2012 elections will inevitably focus on judges and the courts.  With the Supreme Court poised to rule on immigration law, Obamacare, and potentially so-called same-sex marriage this summer, judges and our courts will dominate the debate this fall,” he said. “On this score, there is no debate over which candidate has led, and can best be trusted to lead the fight over the role of our judiciary and the nomination of qualified judges to the courts that will respect our Constitution.”

“Finally, Senator Santorum is a man of honor, integrity, and authenticity.  What you see is what you get.  He has faithfully served the cause of life and marriage as an elected official and as a husband and father.  And while no political candidate, or human being for that matter, is perfect, Rick Santorum’s baggage contains his clothes,” the CatholicVote president said.

He concluded:  “Republicans hoping to win back the White House in November must unite behind the candidate most dedicated to the foundational issues of faith, family and freedom.  If the GOP hopes to defeat President Obama, it takes a Rick Santorum to get it done.”

CatholicVote.org was launched in September 2008 as a new effort to educate, organize, and mobilize the Catholic vote.  The national group was responsible for one of the most watched online commercials during the 2008 presidential campaign, watched by nearly 3 million viewers on YouTube alone.