Santorum Campaign Ends
Republican candidate bows out leaving Romney as likely nominee
Republican candidate Rick Santorum ended his campaign for the presidency on Tuesday, but pledged to keep fighting for his party and the future of America. In a short speech given in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, with his family by his side, an emotional Santorum said, "We made a decision over the weekend that while this presidential race for us is over, for me, and we will suspend our campaign today, we are not done fighting." While Santorum did not give specific reasons for leaving the race, his campaign has been struggling financially and in the polls. Campaign officials say there were also personal reasons. His announcement came after this weekend's hospitalization of his three-year-old daughter, Isabella, who suffers from a life-threatening illness. Santorum's departure leaves Mitt Romney as the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.
Before the announcement, Santorum and Romney spoke by phone. At a campaign stop in Delaware, Romney told supporters, "We exchanged our thoughts about going forward, and we both have a great deal of interest in seeing the country taken in a very different path. I look forward to his work in helping to assure victories for Republicans across the country in November."
Romney's campaign cancelled almost three million dollars worth of anti-Santorum television ads that were scheduled to air in Santorum's home state of Pennsylvania before the April 24th primary. Romney's spokesperson, Andrea Saul, said in a statement, "We have done this out of deference to Sen. Santorum's decision to suspend his campaign for personal family reasons."
It has at times been a hard fought and bitter campaign for these two candidates, and according to Santorum's communications director, Hogan Gidley, a Santorum endorsement may not be inevitable. However, Santorum has established himself as an important voice of conservatives and evangelicals, and Romney will likely pursue his support. The other Republican candidates, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul, remain in the race, and Santorum's name will remain on the ballot for the April 24 primaries in some states, including Connecticut and New York.