Rick Santorum, former GOP presidential candidate, told attendees of the Values Voter Summit in Washington on Saturday, that "elite, smart people" will never support conservatives.
According to BuzzFeed Politics, the former Pennsylvania senator told an audience of conservatives at the Omni Shoreham hotel: "We will never have the media on our side, ever, in this country. We will never have the elite, smart people on our side, because they believe they should have the power to tell you what to do. So our colleges and our universities, they're not going to be on our side."
According to Santorum, who lost to Mitt Romney in the 2012 Republican Party presidential nomination, the mainstream media also don't like conservatives. He said: "And not necessarily, I would argue, because they agree with them, but because they can influence the country. If just a few people make decisions about what this world looks like, what this country looks like, then you have people sitting in offices at major media outlets and Hollywood who think they can deal with a small group of people, to get them to jump through the hoops they want you to."
BuzzFeeed Politics reports Santorum also criticized the Libertarians for not supporting the major values of conservatism. He said: "When it comes to conservatism libertarian types can say, oh, well you know, we don't want to talk about social issues. Without the church and the family, there is no conservative movement, there is no basic values of America."
Analysts are wondering what Santorum, a Penn State University graduate, who completed MBA and law degrees meant by the comment "we will never have the elite, smart people on our side." If he meant the word "smart" in irony, did he miss the irony that equally rebounds on his intended irony given that in the context he identifies "smart people" as those in "our colleges and our universities"? Regardless of any intended irony in his statement, people in "our colleges and our universities" are surely among modern society's smartest.
America Blog comments with questions:
"[Santorum says] smart people will never be on your side - but the audience, made up of religious right leaders from around the country, is on your side. Thus religious right leaders are not 'smart people.'
"...do you think 'dumb' people are better able to determine the life of a fetus than 'smart' people? Are dumb people better able to analyze the science on global warming and determine whether or not it's a hoax? On gay rights, are dumb people really more capable at determining whether there's a constitutional right to civil rights for gays? And finally (but not limited to), health care reform - you really think dumb people are better than smart people and determining its constitutionality, let alone whether health care reform is the best approach, among those available, at helping more Americans get more affordable, and better, health care without hurting the economy."
Santorum has a reputation for what has been described as his "anti-intellectual" stance. According to The Washington Post, while he was running for Republican presidential nomination in February, he said obama was a "snob" because of his alleged view that all Americans should go to college.
Santorum also has a long history of verbal gaffes. According to The Guardian, he was once quoted as saying he did not want to make "black people's lives better by giving the somebody else's money." But he later claimed he was misquoted.
The Huffington Post reports the Value Voters Summit was sponsored by FRC Action, the lobbying arm of the Family Research Council. The Washington Post reports that other conservative organizations sponsoring the three-day conference are the Heritage Foundation and Liberty University
Paul Ryan also spoke at the summit on Friday but protesters repeatedly interrupted his speech.