Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is batting back at rival Rick Perry who has accused Santorum of being a “prolific earmarker.”
Earmarks are used by members of congress to target spending for pet projects. Santorum has said he’s proud of the earmarks he directed for projects in Pennsylvania, and this afternoon in Ames, Santorum stressed that as president he would veto bills that contain earmarks.
“Look, if you look at my record and you look at what my plan is for being president, cutting $5 trillion over the next five years, there won’t be a whole lot of room for earmarking,” Santorum said.
Santorum stopped by a sports bar in Ames for a Pinstripe Bowl party and critics distributed flyers on cars in the parking lot, questioning the former senator’s anti-abortion record. Santorum suggests he’s getting more attention from his rivals because his standing in the polls has improved.
“I think we’ve got a very strong message and we’ve very effectively been able to communicate that. I’m sure the scrutiny will come,” Santorum said, laughing. “There’s no concern about that.”
To assure rabid fans of the two major college teams in the state weren’t offended, Santorum’s mid-afternoon attendance at the Ames sports bar for an Iowa State bowl-watching party was followed by an evening appearance at sports bar in Johnston to watch the Hawkeyes play in the Insight Bowl.