February 3, 2016

5 faith facts about Rick Santorum: Church-state separation makes him want to ‘throw up’

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Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum speaks to the crowd after formally declaring his candidacy for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination during an announcement event in Cabot, Pennsylvania, on May 27, 2015. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Aaron Josefczyk
*Editors: This photo may only be republished with RNS-SANTORUM-FAITH, origianally transmitted on May 28, 2015 or with RNS-GUSHEE-COLUMN, originally transmitted on Jan. 6, 2015.

Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum speaks to the crowd after formally declaring his candidacy for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination during an announcement event in Cabot, Pennsylvania, on May 27, 2015. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Aaron Josefczyk *Editors: This photo may only be republished with RNS-SANTORUM-FAITH, origianally transmitted on May 28, 2015 or with RNS-GUSHEE-COLUMN, originally transmitted on Jan. 6, 2015.

UPDATE: Former Sen. Rick Santorum withdrew from the 2016 race on Feb. 3

(RNS) Rick Santorum is back among the ever-swelling GOP presidential candidate lists.

He won 11 primaries in 2012 with his devoutly Catholic, homeschooling-dad culture-warrior campaign. On Wednesday (May 27), he declared for the 2016 race with his traditionalist moral views freshly sharpened.


READWhat do 2016 election contenders believe? Check the RNS ‘5 faith facts’ series


Five faith facts about Santorum:

1. He’s opposed to abortion, same-sex marriage and the teaching of evolution.

Santorum served in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, where he staked out positions opposing abortion, same-sex marriage and the teaching of evolution. The breakdown of the traditional man-woman family is America’s most urgent problem, he told the Homeschool Iowa Capitol Day Forum in April.

2. He would not attend a same-sex wedding.

Pope Francis may say “who am I to judge?,” but not Santorum. A Daily Beast writer called him “a few Knights Templar short of a holy war,” highlighting comments such as Santorum’s view that contraception is “dangerous” because it offers “license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.” In an April interview, he told radio host Hugh Hewitt, “As a person of my faith, (attending a same-sex wedding) would be something that would be a violation of my faith. I would love them and support them but I would not be a participant in that ceremony.”

3. He appeals to evangelicals.

He can talk the talk with evangelicals who want to see politicians spell out the ties between their personal faith and their actions. Catholic traditionalist Robert P. George told Religion News Service that Santorum is one of the few Catholic Republicans who has “figured it out.” Santorum had the endorsement of traditionalists at CatholicVote.org for his “unified moral and economic vision,” according to the National Review. But a New York Times look at exit polls in the 2012 primaries showed Santorum lost the Catholic vote to Mitt Romney by significant margins in 10 of 12 states where pollsters asked about religion. It also found that more than 40 percent of Catholic voters didn’t even know Santorum is Catholic.

4. He’s not a fan of church-state separation.

The concept of separation of church and state — at least as expressed when Catholic John F. Kennedy addressed Baptist ministers in the 1960 presidential election campaign — makes Santorum “want to throw up.” In 2012 he told George Stephanopoulos, “I don’t believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute,” and Santorum called that notion “antithetical” to the vision of our country. Also antithetical: liberals. He told the Spartanburg Herald-Journal that the American left “hates Christendom.” According to ABC News, he also told a South Carolina town hall that the national ideal “is rooted in the Christian ideal — in the Judeo-Christian concept of the person” and not in any Eastern faiths or philosophies.

5. He works for a Christian movie distributor.

Santorum has a culture-warrior day job. In the wake of his failed 2012 campaign, he found another way to “impact people’s lives” — he’s the CEO of Christian movie distributor EchoLight. It produces and distributes Christian family movies directly to hundreds of U.S. churches. Santorum told The National Journal: “I think culture is upstream from politics, and maybe it’s important to get involved in the upstream and see what the impact can be to the country generally as a result.”

(Cathy Lynn Grossman is senior national correspondent at RNS)

  • CarrotCakeMan

    Santorum consistently shows how disloyal he is to our United States Constitution.

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  • Terry Saunders

    So will Rick Santorum’s thrown up vomit be as frothy as he is? One would have to expect so.

    Just Google “Rick Santorum frothy” to learn more about that.

  • Larry

    Opposition to abortion and marriage equality can be done without impugning the intelligence of the person. But opposition to the teaching of the well established scientific principles of evolution can’t be done without looking like an absolute idiot.

    There is no rational, scientific, or remotely objective thing which can be said in defense of creationism. Santorum essentially has declared that his religious belief trump rational thought and honest presentation of his faith. A declaration of being an ignorant cretin.

    Run Santorum Run. The Democrats can use an easy win for the presidency.

  • Fran

    Unlike him, I totally believe in separation of Church and state. In trying my best to be a follower of Christ, I do not get involved in politics at all. I will not vote for him or anyone else on the ballot.

  • Bart

    “I’ll take a devout Catholic anytime”

    That’s fine, but your lack of other selection criteria for that act hardly leads to cleansing, nor does the act itself.

  • Greg1

    I like Rick.

  • JR

    With the crop of characters selling their souls for votes out there now…….most especially the deceptive Clinton…..him stating he is a devout Catholic is enough reason to believe he is his own man. A real man.

  • Fran

    Jesus, his disciples, the apostles and the first-century Christians did not get involved in politics. Google first-century Christians and politics, and history speaks for itself.

    Jesus said he was no part of this world, and neither are his followers. When he felt that the people wanted to make him King, he left them. He’s the King of God’s kingdom or heavenly government that will soon put an end to all human governments (Daniel 2:44; Isaiah 11:1-9).

    As Jesus instructed, I will pay Caesar’s things to Caesar (pay my taxes and have respect for authority), but pay God’s things to God (my worship goes to him and my allegiance to his government, not man’s).

  • Nothing says blithering idiocy more than Creationism. Run Rick Run!

    The Democrats need an easy win for the presidency.. 🙂

  • Gwen

    He’s far too much of a frothy mixture for me. I can’t believe anyone with a working brain would support him.

  • Gwen

    He’s a devout Catholic? How embarrassing for the Republican party. And he’s so FROTHY…

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/05/rick-santorum-2016-dan-savage-google

  • Gwen

    Fran that is just a lazy excuse. Your civic duty means that you should take the opportunity to get out and vote, and contribute to the selection of our governing people.

    So get off your lazy butt for a change and just do it. Don’t be so irresponsible, and stop making excuses.

  • France’s Fjord Chocolates

    Yeah, I have to say, Santorum coupled with his agenda of bigotry is way too much filthy froth to be electable, and that’s a good thing. One of my fears is that he’d work to change the constitution that he is in conflict with, and bring his filthy frothy thinking into that.

  • Fran

    Gwen,

    It is not an excuse since I am making a resolute stand for God’s government, being a theocrat. I have never voted, and I am over the age of 50. There are millions of persons who still exercise their right and freedom to vote; I exercise my right and freedom not to. Through my lifetime, I already know what to expect from man’s governments.

    If I lived anywhere else on the planet, that would still be my choice. Maybe you will understand my choice when God’s government soon intervenes in man’s affairs and makes everything right.

  • Ethel Of The Bethel

    Fran it is not permitted for you to vote until you have received sixth circumcision. While you are in present immature person not fully circumcised you must not have political dining and travesty. On present course you will remain only an instrument and shall not vote.

  • Pr Chris

    Fran. You said if you lived anywhere else in the world you still wouldn’t vote. But in some countries, the Soviet Union, for one, voting was MANDATORY, even though there was only one candidate on the ballot, and you had better vote FOR that candidate.

    Mark Twain once said, you may not have anyone you want to vote FOR, but there is certainly someone you can vote AGAINST. There are definitely people that I will vote against in the next election. By voting against the worse candidate, you might help to ensure that that individual will not be in officer, where he/she can do immense harm. There are also, in many jurisdictions, where there are referenda and initiatives which have a significant impact on the course of your government. Surely voting for such initiatives may help right significant wrongs and direct the govenment toward better directions.

    Third, Read Romans 13. And reflect on that. Authorities are God’s gift; we are to obey them. Don’t you think we ought to…

  • Fran

    Gwen,

    My Mom is an alien in this country, having come here with my Dad when in her 20’s from Europe, before I was born. My Mom is still an alien at 84, not able to pay the thousands of dollars necessary to become a “citizen” nor comfortable to take the test about American history which she knows nothing about.

    My younger sister, who belongs to another faith, was “urged” by her church to vote “Republican” of course, because they are “more in line with their beliefs.” She voted for Obama both times and her husband refused to vote; he believed Obama is the “antichrist.”

    Obviously, people believe in different things and stand up for what they do believe in. My mom can’t vote and my sister made her own choice based on what she believed in.

    I refuse to vote for any human politicians. I do not trust them to tell the truth nor make their promises happen. I believe them to be corrupt, selfish, looking for their own interests, and greedy. In God I trust and not in…

  • Fran

    Ethel,

    I have no idea what you are talking about…sixth circumcision??? But you are correct that I will not vote!

  • Fran

    …and not in man.

  • Fran

    Pr Chris,
    Yes, there are so many types of “government” in human history: Democracy, communism, King/queen; dictatorship, etc.

    Like the Soviet Union, some governments exercise more control. Many of my “spiritual brothers” there are serving years of prison terms for refusing to join the military and kill their fellowman as conscientious objectors. The same is true of my brothers in Korea. Yet, they still stand firm.

    If the U.S. Government overnight declared that everyone MUST VOTE, I would have to object and refuse based on my beliefs. If I faced imprisonment because of that, so be it.

    The apostles were ordered to quit preaching in Jesus’ name, but courageously replied, “We must obey God as ruler rather than man.” (Acts 5:29).

    Daniel 2:44 promises that God’s kingdom will put an end to all human governments. That heavenly government is where my trust and hope lies. The time left for the higher powers/governments allowed by God (Romans 13) is short.

  • Ethel of the Bethel

    Fran you are not advanced enough in your initiation to know and you shall not know until the rite is accomplished. It is not permitted for you to vote until you have received sixth circumcision. While you are in present immature person not fully circumcised you must not have political dining and travesty. On present course you will remain only an instrument and shall not vote.

  • Fran

    Ethel,

    I will never vote, so you don’t have to worry about me. ?

  • Jack

    CarrotCakeMan, if he said he was against any separation whatsoever between religion and state, you’d be right. But from the writer’s quote, it appears he was saying he’s against an absolute separation. There’s a real difference between the two positions. Not that you care, but it’s worth pointing out.

    I don’t think Santorum is presidential material….he doesn’t have an executive personality, nor do most legislators. I think he has a way of providing ample fodder for his political enemies — he’s a gaffe machine.

    But it’s interesting that he continues to attract all the right foes.

  • Jack

    Oops…..fraud alert:

    It looks like “Terry Saunders” is yet another made-up name by one of our two board posters who collect names like Victorian ladies collected hats.

    The silly goose revealed himself by including and even bolding the word, “frothy,” which he previously used as part of another name with “Santorum” as the first word.

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  • linda

    Check out, “Answers in Genesis!”

  • George Nixon Shuler

    6. He had his children hold their baby brother who died at birth. Some of them were under 6 at the time.

    7. He lost re-election to Bob Casey Jr. by a whopping 17 points.

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  • Bob

    To me folks. Our “Civic duty” is absolutely whatever WE as individuals choose it to be. What we as stand-alone Americans (hopefully Citizens) say it is, for our own self. For our Voting privilege.

    If ones doesn’t have that, in this country. you don’t have much, every two and four years.

    Bob

  • Bob

    I believe what Rick Sant. really, really wants. Is naked legislative power at his fingertips. Just like all of the other 536 House/Senate/WH whores we have right now in Office. So . . . .

    This, so he can truly have his take on, very excessive Church/State entanglement. So he, Pat Robertson, and most certainly the David Barton(istas) can have a State that is as close to an overall Theocracy, as they could get to together and create, and pull-off.

    It’s people like the above, and millions of others in the rank-and-file, that want to fix this nation, through legislative fiat; Exec. Orders, and the like. True illegitimates, that you can find in so many American Church pews, every week. Easily-led – yet dangerous, fools taking it all in. Because that’s what their pastor said. ???????

    – Bob