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Obama Campaign Begins to Target Santorum

by Keith Koffler on February 16, 2012, 9:17 am

In a sign that President Obama’s political advisers now believe they may face Rick Santorum in the general election, the Obama campaign Wednesday sent an email to its supporters asking for examples of Santorum’s “extreme-right social views.”

The nascent effort to denigrate Santorum also suggests the Obama camp has concerns about Santorum’s potential strength in the general election and is not so sure it would prefer to run against him instead of  Mitt Romney.

Were the Obama campaign eager to go up against Santorum instead of Romney, it would hold its fire against Santorum and allow him to continue damaging and possibly even defeat Romney.

After winning contests in Colorado, Minnesota and Missouri last week, Santorum has rocketed back into the GOP presidential contest, leading Romney in most of the recent national polls of Republicans.

The Obama campaign has long presumed that Romney would be the GOP nominee and has geared its operation toward destroying him while leaving his Republican rivals alone.

But now, the Obama’s operatives clearly believe they must begin to frame public perceptions of Santorum, particularly among moderates who might be thinking of switching from Obama.

The email, which was written by Obama’s Pennsylvania state director, asks recipients to “share their recollections” of Santorum’s years as a Pennsylvania senator, seeking examples of positions and statements that make Santorum appear as far out of the mainstream as possible.

It appears to have been crafted for Pennsylvanians, but it was sent out by the national campaign to supporters outside the state as well. Here’s an excerpt:

Here’s someone who has actually bragged that he was a tea partier before there was a Tea Party — someone whose extreme-right social views are as out of touch as they are memorable.

Folks across the country are just starting to learn about Rick Santorum as he enjoys his newfound wave of popularity. But people here have known him for some time — long before he was out on the national stage like he is now. And it’s on us to make sure the rest of the country sees Rick Santorum’s true colors.

Share your recollections of Rick Santorum’s record in Pennsylvania.

We all have a role to play in helping introduce the real Rick Santorum to voters in the 49 other states. Your story will help hold him responsible for his actions — and could inspire other Pennsylvanians to get involved and raise their voices, too.

And when it comes to his greatest hits in this state, you’ll have no shortage of material to choose from.

Share what you want the rest of the country to know about Rick Santorum — and then ask your fellow Pennsylvanians to join you.

A link in the email leads to leads to a page on the Obama 2012 national website where recipients can dish on Santorum. Once they’ve submitted their comments, they are taken to a separate page where they are hit up for a donation.

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{ 29 comments }

Brett February 16, 2012 at 9:30 am

…the Obama War Machine lumbers down the runway. If someone put out an email soliciting your “recollections of how the Executive Branch has negativley impacted your life” he’d be branded a Seditionist before being sexually assaulted by Government Agents. And do you detect a slight invitation to scandal in that last sentence? “If anyone has anything on Rick Santorum, now’s the time to chime-in.”
…along with four fund-raisers today.
How can we NOT be so Cynical?

Mike C February 16, 2012 at 9:43 am

thanks for letting people know about this. I fantasize about people sending in positive recollections to the site.

Cooper February 16, 2012 at 9:47 am

Just a matter of time before the great Chicago slime machine turned its sights on Santorum, Sickening bastards, I hope the GOP has the balls to give as good as it gets.

srdem65 February 16, 2012 at 9:51 am

There’s something just so un-American about this kind of thing. And hypocritcal coming from a campaign to re-elect a man who has hidden almost every aspect of his life before becoming President.

Star February 16, 2012 at 10:45 am

Bingo on that one, SrDem–these people have noooo sense of irony.

Susan February 16, 2012 at 9:52 am

How ironic. The man who has spent millions hiding his past is looking for scandalous dirt on one of our potential nominees. Wonder how many of our so-called conservative icons who have been trashing Newt will jump on Obama’s bandwagon and start beating on Santorum. They never saw him as a threat to the establishment favorite until now…

Shofar February 16, 2012 at 10:00 am

Given the debacle that the contraceptive issue has become for Obama, alienating a huge segment of his core voters – Catholics – it is no wonder that the “O” Team is trying to zero in on Santorum.

Santorum is Catholic, and voices the opinions and beliefs that many Catholics hold to, if in name only.

If Santorum does get the nomination, I hope he announces during the campaign who will make up his Cabinet. My suggestions would be Joe Lieberman as Sec. Def.; Rudy Giuliani as A.G.; John Bolton as Sec. of State; keep Gen. Petraeus on at CIA; Allen West at DHS; don’t really care who would be VP, as long as it’s not the idiot in there now.

With those kinds of appointments, the “O” Team would be hard pressed to keep any but their most radical fringe constituency. I could picture Mrs. O’s head spinning à la Linda Blair over the thought of loosing her precious status and perks.

Brett February 16, 2012 at 10:12 am

Now, that would be one helluva Cabinet

rulierose February 16, 2012 at 6:06 pm

I don’t know how to tell you this, but 60% of Americans said they agreed that even religious organizations should provide birth control for their employees.

and lest you try to blame the lefties: it was a Fox poll.

so surprising as it is to you and me, apparently this is playing well out there.

Lizzy February 16, 2012 at 10:11 am

You gotta wonder who beat up little Barry to make him such a cowardly little
man. Thin skinned surrounded by mother figures all at the ready to protect
their little man from the big bad American who doesn’t like him…boohoo:(

Anonna February 16, 2012 at 10:12 am

Let’s open a site asking for reminiscences of Barack Obama. There’d be no need to hire any staff.

pianogirl88 February 16, 2012 at 10:14 am

Where’s the LIKE button when you need one?

Car in February 16, 2012 at 10:31 am

Man, I hate these people.

Star February 16, 2012 at 10:48 am

I’ve had days like that, Car. And my Momma did not say I would.

Star February 16, 2012 at 10:52 am

It is amusing to see these brain trusts cloud-sourcing their oppo research.

Girly1 February 16, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Well, I had just had an encounter with the Messsiah a few minutes ago! His mile-long motorcade just left the Beverly Hilton (where Whitney died) and almost ran over me and my dog as I was taking him for his morning constitutional! Scared the living daylights out of both of us! The fools were racing up my very quiet street at 70 mph, sirens blasting, loud-speaker telling everyone to ‘move off the street’!!! I have no idea who they were yelling at since we were the only ones on the street!

I have seen the last four Presidents come and go over the years….but NO ONE puts on a show like this megalomaniac!!! Reagan used to jog in the park up the street but only had two SUV’s with Secret Service. No fire trucks, no Paramedics – no fuss. Same with Clinton and especially George
Bush!

It might not seem like a big deal — but it really is a measure of the man. With Obama, it’s ALL ABOUT HIM! Sadly, it looks like we are going to get four more years of this!

ol gator February 16, 2012 at 1:42 pm

barry hussein would not last ONE DAY in the battlefield… he would crawl into a fox hole or behind a big Marine & cry for his mammy as he begs allah for deliverance… what a sorry, spineless, sack of shiite !

Susan February 16, 2012 at 2:56 pm

That is a truly bizarre experience Girly1. How paranoid is this guy?

Thank you for sharing your Reagan memories. He was one of us.

Star February 16, 2012 at 3:02 pm

I bet your dog could have taken Bo–does Bo fundraise…?

Brenda A. February 16, 2012 at 11:32 pm

Fundraise… is that like ‘sit’ or ‘roll-over’? New dog trick?

Suzie February 16, 2012 at 3:06 pm

That really is so very creepy Girly1…..

rulierose February 16, 2012 at 6:08 pm

he’s also the first president who felt it necessary to have a presidential CANDIDATE seal.

kind of amazing our country is big enough for all the wonderful things about Obama, isn’t it…

Sadie February 16, 2012 at 12:24 pm

2010 – Fight the Smears
2011 – Attack Watch
2012 – Team T

With every donation get a free ‘Brownshirt”

Just2old February 16, 2012 at 12:26 pm

Hurl…

Lanie February 16, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Evil has an advantage. It has no boundaries.

cindylouwho February 16, 2012 at 2:11 pm

a good reason to vote for Santorum

rulierose February 16, 2012 at 6:09 pm

there’s no good reason to vote for Santorum, unless your aim is to give Obama four more years.

just sayin’.

Brenda A. February 16, 2012 at 11:29 pm

Why doesn’t he dither when it comes to campaigning? No ‘leading from behind’ here.

Alexander February 17, 2012 at 10:10 am

Republicans please. Santorum? The guy lost to Bob Casey Jr, you really think he can beat Obama?