Rick Santorum raised more than $1 million in the day after the Iowa caucus and has brought in more cash via online donations in last week then he did in the previous six months combined. Santorum's campaign took in just $700,000 in the three-month period ending in September, but saw a crush of new donations after finishing just eight votes behind Mitt Romney in Iowa. The new money was so great that his campaign website briefly collapsed on Wednesday.

Despite the surge in cash, Santorum is still playing from behind in New Hampshire and South Carolina and will need a lot more than momentum to capture upcoming states.

Of course, with his new found success comes new-found scrutiny and criticism. Santorum's success in Iowa was partly a matter of timing. Since he was the only Republican candidate to not be declared a front runner during the 2011 build-up, he was also the only one to not have his record put under a microscope. The Associated Press takes the first shot today, showing that his reputation as a "true conservative" is not borne out by his record in Congress. Santroum made liberal use of earmarks during his one House and two Senate terms, and also voted in favor of several big government initiatives, like the "No Child Left Behind" act, food stamps, farm subsidies, Amtrak, and the Medicare drug expansion.

These days Santorum wants a balanced budget amendment and line-item vetos and says he supports a ban on earmarks, despite his frequent use of them as a Congressman. He also says he regrets some of those votes, but that's an easier stance to make when you're not actually trying to support your district from Capitol Hill. His social conservative bona fides are most intact, but a lot of hardliner right wingers and Tea Party members — particularly those Michele Bachmann backers who think he might be their replacement candidate — may soon find that Santorum's definition of "authentic conservative" may not be the same as theirs.