Rick Santorum Literally Doesn’t Care About the Unemployment Rate

rick santorumIt's been a good run for Rick Santorum, but all weird things must come to an end. The GOP presidential candidate who's frightened a lot of people on his attempted path to the White House may have just put the final nail in his coffin when he told a rally in Illinois that he really doesn't care about the unemployment rate. With close to 24 million Americans looking for jobs, Santorum might as well have handed the campaign to Mitt Romney on a silver, nay, platinum platter.

It didn't take long for the Romney team to scoop up Santorum's soundbite and hold it against him. I guess when the opposing candidate says something as politically imperfect as that, you have to take advantage. I mean, you might not believe what came out of Santorum's mouth:


We need a candidate who's going to be a fighter for freedom. Who's going to get up and make that the central theme in this race because it is the central theme in this race. I don't care what the unemployment rate's going to be. Doesn't matter to me. My campaign doesn't hinge on unemployment rates and growth rates. It's something more foundational that's going on.

Is there anything more fundamental than being able to provide food, clothing, and shelter for your family? I think that a lot of Americans care deeply about freedom, but also care about finding jobs, and the promise of more job opportunities. To callously dismiss the unemployment rate is not only dim, it's irresponsible.

Romney's already capitalizing on Santorum's mistake -- a spokesperson for his campaign released a statement that dug at Santorum and reaffirmed Romney's commitment to getting Americans back to work.

Santorum tried to clarify his comments and said that he doesn't believe that any president can fix the economy, a notion many Republicans agree with. However, the fact that he said he doesn't care about joblessness might give Romney the edge. Once you open your mouth and literally say that you don't care about something so many people do, your swim upstream begins. And it's going to be one long, choppy river.

What do you think about Santorum's comment on unemployment?


Photo via marcn/Flickr

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