Santorum Challenges Rivals Religous Freedom Views

fromWPLN

Campaigning in Tennessee Wednesday, GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum's camp took the opportunity to slam rival Mitt Romney for having a "liberal Record" on freedom of religion. At Nashville's Belmont University, Santorum spoke about his own views of religious freedom.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

So, by the end of the day, Romney said he agreed with conservative lawmakers on contraception. But as Rick Santorum campaigned in Tennessee, he seized on the confusion.

Here's Blake Farmer of member station WPLN.

BLAKE FARMER, BYLINE: In a press release, the Santorum camp took the opportunity to slam Romney for having a liberal record on freedom of religion. During an event at Nashville's Belmont University, Santorum spoke at length about his own views of religious freedom.

RICK SANTORUM: You have the rights. They're God-given. Government can't give or take anything from you.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

FARMER: At times, Santorum's stump speech was met with boos from hecklers. But he continued to revisit thorny themes like the gap between rich and poor.

SANTORUM: Look here in Nashville. There is great income inequality. Why? Because there are amazing talents in this town that soar and do great things and inspire great things in other people. And they are richly rewarded for it. And there are those who may work just as hard, but they don't succeed for one reason or another.

FARMER: Rally attendee Pam Chaffin says she appreciates how Santorum speaks his mind, especially on social issues such as abortion.

PAM CHAFFIN: You have to admire someone, because it's not politically correct, what he says sometimes. But it is right.

FARMER: Santorum's message is resonating in Tennessee. The most recent polling shows him with a double-digit lead over Romney heading into Super Tuesday.

For NPR News, I'm Blake Farmer in Nashville.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to NPR. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

Support comes from: