Guy Benson
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Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum formally announced his entrance into the 2012 Presidential sweepstakes this morning, telling ABC News' George Stephanopoulos that he's "in it to win:"
 


National Review's Kathryn Lopez has a piece out today praising Santorum as a leader of the conservative vanguard against social liberalism, especially his well-known stances on the hot-button issues of gay marriage and abortion:
 

On marriage, by the way, he has said: “If we do not, as a party and as a people, stand behind the institution of marriage and understand its essential role as the glue that holds the family together — the family, the building block of society, the first economy, the first school, the first place where children’s character is formed — we are going to destine our children and destine the future of this country for a lower standard of living and a less free and prosperous country.”

...Santorum, who was a leader in truly changing the debate in the 1990s about abortion, by working toward a ban on partial-birth abortion, does not discuss issues like the dignity of human life and marriage to be divisive or intolerant, but because he believes they’re integral to our Founding, to our divinely ordained rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.


The Washington Examiner's Philip Klein wonders if Santorum's energetic social conservatism will be sufficient to overcome some fiscal conservative blots on his record:
 

Whatever his rhetoric, Santorum at the end of the day embraced many of the big government initiatives of the Bush administration, including the Medicare prescription drug plan. Though he now speaks out against earmarks, he took them while in the Senate. He also pushed milk supports for dairy farmers in rural Pennsylvania. And who can forget the fact thathe endorsed Arlen Specter over Pat Toomey in the 2004 GOP Senate primary in Pennsylvania. And we all know how that turned out -- Specter went on to become a Democrat and cast the deciding vote for Obamacare, while Toomey proved he could actually get elected statewide in Pennsylvania.


Santorum is holding a kick-off rally with supporters in the Keystone State within the hour.

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Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography