Morals and economy are linked according to Rick Santorum 

Family Man

Qualifications: U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania. Former House member from Pennsylvania. Did legal work for World Wrestling Entertainment.
Unique Ideas: Telling Iran to open its nuclear weapon facilities for inspection, under the threat of bombing. Rejecting climate change science.

Editor's Note: We asked each candidate to write a direct appeal to South Carolina voters. This is Rick Santorum's response.

On June 7, 2011, I announced my candidacy for the Republican nomination for President of the United States. Our nation needs a new leader who is willing to do what has to be done for the next generation and who has the courage to fight for freedom, and the courage to fight for America.

This election will be the most important of our lifetime. During the past two years, I have traveled all across America, including 26 trips to South Carolina, talking with folks from every county who are deeply concerned about the direction President Obama has taken our nation. Time after time, people have told me that they are hungry for a bold leader to help restore our confidence and pride in being an American. It is for these reasons that I am running for President in 2012.

We are at a crucial juncture in our nation's history — our economy is at a tipping point, the job market is stagnant, and gas prices are continually on the rise. America's standing in the world is continuously under attack. Much of this stems from President Obama's political leadership that has serious and systemic doubts about America's role in the world and the purpose of our moral authority in it. Finally, our culture is being challenged from leftist forces that have little regard for the traditions and values that are the very foundations of our nation.

The economy is inextricably linked to the moral fabric of this country. We can't have a real solution-based conversation about fixing the economic problems in this country without faith and family being a large part of that conversation.

It's wrong for anyone to try to reduce the idea of America solely to economy. The spirit of America is much more than money — it is faith, family, and freedom. The strength of the traditional family, the moral fabric of our nation, and basic value of human life greatly impact our economy.

In fact, the family is the first economy, and without strong families we cannot have limited government, nor can we have a vibrant free-market economy. Our Founders understood this basic fact, which is why they explicitly declared that our rights come to each and every individual from God. Our Founders trusted in free people to make good and moral choices, and we must do that again today if we hope to remain a free and vibrant society.

As I have said to countless South Carolinians all across this great state: "What wins in America are bold ideas, sharp contrasts, and a plan that includes everyone — a plan that includes people from all across the economic spectrum and a plan that says we will work together to get America to work."

I commit to you that I will stand tall for what we know to be true. America is the most exceptional nation in the history of the world. It is exceptional not just because of what we have accomplished, but for who we are as a people and a nation. I'm not running for president to be the most powerful person in the world. I am running for president to give power back to you. I am asking you to share this goal with me as I know we all have the courage to fight for America.

Karen and I thank you so very much for your friendship and support. I humbly ask for your vote on Jan. 21.


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