The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller
Rick Santorum at YAFCON 2013 Rick Santorum at YAFCON 2013  

Santorum: GOP should stop using ‘class-envy, leftist language that divides America’

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum delivered a populist message to conservative activists on Friday, saying it’s time for Republicans to stand up for the working class of the country and stop using the “class-envy, leftist language that divides America.”

After using the term “working Americans,” Santorum told the crowd at the Conservative Political Action Conference to “notice how I didn’t say ‘middle class.’”

“Classes in America? Do we really accept the fact that there are classes in America? Then why do we use that term? Why do we adopt their language?” he said of liberals. “We need to stop that. We need to stop acting like them.”

“We should reach out to working Americans. Because unlike them,” Santorum continued, speaking of the left, “we believe work is a good thing.”

Santorum, a 2012 presidential candidate who has acknowledged he might run in 2016, spoke Friday afternoon at the annual gathering of conservative activists outside Washington.

He took issue with the argument often made that he is singularly the candidate for cultural conservatives, saying he won votes from across the conservative spectrum.

“That really wasn’t true,” he said of the social conservative characterization in 2012. “Let’s be honest. Everybody in that race was a cultural conservative. They all have the same positions I have. Almost identical. You wouldn’t know that.”

He also criticized how Mitt Romney’s campaign during the 2012 Republican convention implemented its “We Built That” theme. The campaign was hitting Obama for his comments that, “If you’ve got a business—you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

But Santorum said Romney got it wrong by only featuring business owners – instead of workers – at the convention. “We trotted out small business person after small business person after small business person after large business person.”

“We didn’t send one server in a restaurant,” Santorum said.

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