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"I'm running for president": Santorum the latest Republican candidate to enter White House race

Former senator Rick Santorum wants to protect American freedoms and says he’s ready to lead.

Unfortunately, Santorum's daughter Isabella doesn't think much of his presidential bid.
Unfortunately, Santorum's daughter Isabella doesn't think much of his presidential bid.
Image: Gene J. Puskar/AP/Press Association Images

FORMER PENNSYLVANIA SENATOR Rick Santorum, once the third most powerful Republican in the Senate, has said that he’s seeking the GOP nomination for president to protect American freedoms under threat from President Barack Obama.

A blunt-talking favorite among party social conservatives, Santorum said Obama has worked to undermine Americans’ freedoms and pushed through a national health care plan that reduces individual choices.

He accused Obama of spending billions of dollars that add to future generations’ debts and said the president doubts the nation’s potential.

In his announcement speech, he declared:

I’m ready to lead. I’m ready to do what has to be done for the next generation, with the courage to fight for freedom, with the courage to fight for America.

That’s why I’m announcing today that I’m running for president of the United States of America.

Santorum, who enjoys strong support from the anti-abortion rights bloc in the Republican Party, nodded to the social conservatives who have huge sway in early nominating states of Iowa and South Carolina.

He also pitched himself to tea party-style activists who have yet to jell around a single candidate.

Santorum enters the race four days after former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney formally declared his candidacy and former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman and Minnesota congressional representative Michele Bachmann are strongly weighing bids.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty and businessman Herman Cain are already in a race that has seen some of its biggest names decide against bids.

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana and entrepreneur-entertainer Donald Trump have said they’re not running.

There also has been speculation that former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who sought the nomination in 2008, is considering making another run.

- AP

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About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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