At CPAC, Mitt Romney picked up Rick Santorum’s red meat, chewed it and spat it out.
Santorum’s speech to the conservative confab this morning, which I blogged earlier, was mostly focused on what he said were Romney’s lackings: conservative cred and the chops to beat President Obama in November.
Romney insisted that he embodied the conservative principles necessary to win the Republican nomination.
Romney said he was “severely conservative” and added that “I know conservatism because I lived conservatism.”
Romney pleased the CPAC crowd when he stated that he would “defend the Defense of Marriage Act” and would support a constitutional amendment that would “define marriage as a relationship between a man and woman.”
Also, he received applause when he said that his presidency would be a “pro-life presidency on day one” and he would eliminate any federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
In addition, Romney received a loud standing ovation when he announced that he will eliminate Obama’s Affordable Care Act on his first day in office.
“For three years, we’ve suffered through the failures not only of a weak leader, but a bankrupt ideology,” Romney said. “Barack Obama is the poster child for the arrogance of government.”
Romney also stated that he was the “only candidate in this race — Republican or Democrat — who has never worked a day in Washington.”
Not for lack of trying. Romney in 1994 ran for the U.S. Senate against the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.).
Romney’s speech focused primarily on domestic issues and he did not discuss policy priorities on any foreign policy matters, except that he pledged not to cut the military budget.
With Super Tuesday less than a month away and momentum shifting to Santorum, Romney’s appeal to the conservative community could impact his chances in the coming contests in Michigan and Arizona.