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Good Santorum

Santorum in New HampshireWhile it is definitely the season for Republicans to put their candidates through the thresher of primary politics, I think Dan McLaughlin did a great thing by highlighting “Good Newt” in a speech that Gingrich gave to the NRA earlier this year. (Followed by Good Newt Strikes Again) It’s important that while we vet our candidates most notably by focusing on their flaws, we remember that this field of candidates includes some damn fine folks, and some really skilled politicians. I think we need more posts and discussion about their strengths, certainly relative to President Obama.

So this is not about Rick Santorum’s weaknesses or baggage. You can find those if you’re inclined and you won’t have to leave RedState to do so.

No, this is about what I think is Rick Santorum at his best: a full room, handheld mic, and no teleprompter. It’s Santorum at the Rockingham County Nursing Home in Brentwood, NH last night. The video is at C-SPAN.org and it’s about two hours long. You don’t need to watch or listen to the whole thing, but it’s a great example of a hard-working guy working a room while demonstrating not only a mastery of policy and its implications, but also a philosophical defense of conservatism. And throw in an angry questioner or three.

Highlights include:

  • 40:00 A great discussion of the history of the Social Security Trust Fund surplus and its connection to the ever-expanding federal government. Not for nothing, the Daily Caller tried to pull out this snippet and declare “sacrilege!” Not sure if the author watched the whole video or just got an email from some other campaign.
  • 47:00ish Santorum telling a packed house at a nursing home that we need to raise the retirement age, and why.
  • 1:21:45 Responding to the fact that one of Santorum’s nephews is not exactly on message. RedStaters will appreciate this quite a bit.
  • 1:49:26 on another candidate’s “electability.”

Rick Santorum has his weaknesses, but he’s not without some considerable talent as well.

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