Many have predicted Rick Santorum would have to deal with reporters digging up all kinds of dirt from his past after he beat Mitt Romney in three states last week, but the main thing the press has been finding is how his campaign is less presidential than student council. Ever notice how Politico refers to Romney's campaign team as "Boston"? There's no corresponding term for Santorum, because he doesn't even have a campaign headquarters.
Newt Gingrich said he'd run a new kind of campaign, with less traveling and handshaking required because of the internet. (His first set of staffers did not like this plan, and quit.) But Santorum is actually doing it. Alice Stewart began her job as Santorum's national press secretary Monday, ABC News reports, but she works from home in Little Rock, because there's no main office to go into. Stewart spends her days doing conference calls with other staffers scattered across the country -- in South Carolina, Virginia, Iowa and Tennessee, ABC says. Santorum also has no advance team to make sure events go right before the candidate gets there.The lack of advance staff was the reason Monday's rally in Tacoma, Washington was in the dark, in the rain, and next to an Occupy encampment.
Meanwhile, reporters can't help but marvel at the scale of Romney's financial advantage, which keeps being revised upward. On Wednesday, The Washington Post estimated that Romney outspent Santorum 29 to 1.(The Los Angeles Times reported it was closer to 40 to 1.) Santorum is now fully embracing his super PAC, and will do a fundraiser for it Frebruary 23 in Dallas, Politico's Kenneth P. Vogel reports. He's going after the rich guys who backed Rick Perry's campaign. But that event is only five days before the Michigan primary, so even if the super PAC raises a ton of money, it won't have much time to counter the Romney super PAC's super spending.
Romney has other big advantages, too. Only three Republican members of Congress have endorsed Santorum. Romney's got 77, The Hill points out. On Thursday, Romney was endorsed by the Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder. Perhaps this is why, despite trailing in polls, Romney still sounds pretty confident. Asked by Michigan reporters if he might lose the state, Romney said, "that won’t happen.” He compared Santorum not only to his vanquished foes, but to a fake candidate: “It’s always been a two person race. First, it was me against Donald Trump, then it was me against Michele Bachmann, me against Newt Gingrich and now it’s me against Rick Santorum.”