Peggy Noonan on Senator Rick Santorum

We need his kind,” she writes about Senator Rick Santorum in today’s opinion piece:

The sense among so many people–including politicians and journalists–is that the Senate needs his sort, his kind.

The other day I called a former senator, a crusty old moderate Republican, and asked him if he liked Mr. Santorum. “No,” he said, “I love him.” When Mr. Santorum was new to the Senate, in 1995, he, the elder, seasoned legislator tried to mentor him. He wanted to help him survive. Mr. Santorum was grateful and appreciative, “but he kept speaking his mind!” The former senator: “The political scientists all say to be honest and stand for principle, that’s what people want. And he was exactly that, and he’s about to get his head handed to him.” He chuckled then with what seemed the reflexive pleasure of one pol about to see another take a tumble. Then he stopped. It was sad, he said.

I recommend reading all of Peggy’s article, especially this part:

I end with a story too corny to be true, but it’s true. A month ago Mr. Santorum and his wife were in the car driving to Washington for the debate with his opponent on “Meet the Press.” Their conversation turned to how brutal the campaign was, how hurt they’d both felt at all the attacks. Karen Santorum said it must be the same for Bob Casey and his family; they must be suffering. Rick Santorum said yes, it’s hard for them too. Then he said, “Let’s say a Rosary for them.” So they prayed for the Caseys as they hurtled south.

A friend of mine called them while they were praying. She told me about it later, but didn’t want it repeated. “No one would believe it,” she said.

But I asked Mr. Santorum about it. Sure, he said, surprised at my surprise. “We pray for the Caseys every night. We know it’s as hard for them as it is for us.”

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