Santorum swears while chewing out reporter

March 26, 2012

Republican hopeful Rick Santorum cursed during an angry exchange with a New York Times reporter on Sunday, casting a shadow on the image he’s crafted as a social conservative and Christian candidate, and giving fodder to critics who are calling it the “the latest tantorum” meltdown.

At a rally in Wisconsin, a reporter questioned Santorum about calling his rival, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, “the worst Republican” to run against Democratic President Barack Obama. In an earlier speech Santorum equated health care legislation enacted during Romney’s governorship of Massachusetts with Obama’s 2010 health care overhaul.

Visibly annoyed, Santorum asked the reporter, “What speech did you listen to?” and told him to “stop lying.” After accusing the reporter and the media in general of disregarding the truth, Santorum cursed before shaking his head and walking away.

Santorum won the Louisiana primary handily over the weekend with backing from the state’s many Christian evangelicals. A former footnote in the primary race, Santorum has found momentum from evangelical Christians who suspect Romney’s record and his Mormon religion. Santorum has staked his campaign on his image as a devout Catholic.

Watch the video here from CBS News:

Photo credit: REUTERS/Darren Hauck (Santorum speaks to supporters at the Ledgeview Center in the Ledgeview Bowling Lanes in Fond du Lac Wisconsin)

9 comments

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/

The Christian evangelicals in the deep south vote for Santorum, but Catholics do not. That should tell the right wing nuts all they need to know about Santorum’s electibility, but obviously it does not.

Posted by ajp40503 | Report as abusive

Doesn’t he know they are recording him when he’s speaking? We can just go back and listen to the exact quote, in context, where he said Romney is the worst republican in the country to run against Obama. He didn’t say he’s the worst of the 4 presidential candidates; he clearly said he’s they could pick any republican in the country and get a better candidate. Its this kind of constant stupid, undisciplined, off the cuff gaffe that makes him so unelectable.

I guess he’s just taking a page out of the Gingrich playbook. When you say something stupid, instead of clarifying what you meant to say, you just attack the media for quoting you verbatim. Damn you elite media and your fancy recording machines!

Posted by spall78 | Report as abusive

Santorum; Gingrich…etc Just pompous names with very little substance. Those guys are oversold, their egos are feeding off their hyperbolic speech, which only they believe.

Posted by combakpro | Report as abusive

Well, that was a very Christian thing to do!

Posted by cr435 | Report as abusive

Insanitorium!

Posted by tt0077 | Report as abusive

And people want this guy to be the President? Ridiculous.

Posted by nocterequiem | Report as abusive

This is what a Santorum presidency would look like, as well – a lot of self-righteous tantrums, with Rick always in the role of “victim”.

Posted by bvckvs | Report as abusive

Should he have? No. But he is human. The NY Times reporter also should have paid attention to his answer about Romney and reported it in the context it was given.

Why is it Republican candidates are held to a standard of close to perfection while it seems Democrat candidates can get away with murder?

How about some fair reporting by the media for a change? Reporting what someone says in the context it was said. How aobut properly vetting out a candidate rather than letting a lot of things slide soley because you want the person to win based upon the color of their skin?

How about having reporters whose only agenda is reporting the truth? Guess that is too much to ask.

Posted by 1WhoQuestions | Report as abusive

I hate people that ignorantly act like there the victim or they are always right. That reporter was acting professional

Posted by MetalHead8 | Report as abusive