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Santorum in Ohio: President must stop apologizing for America

 

WILLOUGHBY, OH -- Rick Santorum says President Barack Obama has failed to support the U.S. troops and has weakened the military.

"This president has got to stop apologizing for America," Santorum said during an address to 600 Ohio Republicans at a Lincoln Day Dinner here Friday night.  "His gut reaction is always to blame us, to blame our men and women in uniform.  Stop it, Mr. President.  Stand up for our troops.  Stand up for this country."

The former Pennsylvania senator argued that Obama has slashed defense spending while creating new entitlement programs like the health care legislation passed in 2010. He said the president is striving to create an America dependent on the government.

Many have attributed Santorum's second-place finish in the Michigan primary to his fiery rhetoric on the campaign trail. He called the president "a snob" for calling on all Americans to seek higher education, and questioned the president's religious beliefs.

On CNN on Friday, Santorum seemed to acknowledge that the snob comment was over the line, saying "It was a strong term, probably not the smartest thing."

But Friday night, he again went into territory that had drawn criticism from the left and head scratching from some on the right.

"I've gotten some grief in the media lately because, well, I'm a little bit too passionate; I say things that sometimes offend people -- that I talk about government dictating to us and suggested that might not be, you know, a little snobbish for people to do that," Santorum said. "Or I talk about how we have to have traditional values in this country and respect for the dignity of human life and the respect for freedom of religion in this country."

Santorum will spend plenty of time in the Buckeye State leading up to Super Tuesday. Holding the most delegates of all the states voting on March 6, it is largely seen as the state that Santorum needs to win in order to still be considered a top contender for the GOP nomination

"When Ohio whispers, people listen.  When Ohio shouts 'We want a conservative,' this country will stand up and join you," he said.