Not much happening in the Rick Santorum world today. He gets a criticism from the liberal Blank Check movie posterwatchdogs at Media Matters, and does the team player thing on the House GOP's symbolic debt limit vote yesterday (which we talked about vis-a-vis Jason Altmire here).

Here's his statement on the debt vote:

"Conservatives in the House are absolutely right.  We cannot continue to write blank checks that our nation cannot cash.  Before we again raise our nation's debt ceiling, we must insure that the major components of our exploding debt are under control, namely our entitlement programs.  Furthermore, we must put into practice a dollar for dollar savings plan, where for every dollar we raise the debt ceiling the government reduces spending by one dollar.  Finally, we must enact a Balanced Budget Amendment, like the one I advocated for nearly 15 years ago, to ensure that this Administration and every Administration hereafter keeps our nation on a fiscally responsible path."

That statement was datelined Manchester, N.H., where the state's first 2012 GOP debate will be in less than two weeks. RS has staffed up quite a bit there and in Iowa, but his traction is slipping in the latter state according to Public Policy Polling. He doesn't even place in their overall rankings (where Mitt Romney leads followed by Sarah Palin and Herman Cain). In their approval/disapproval ratings RS is at 29/18, with the negatives growing by 7 points since April.

Santorum has been on Fox News a lot (we've lately mentioned spots here and here), and since he's no longer on the network's payroll Media Matters says his frequent appearances amount to in-kind contributions from the network. By their math, he's received about $5 million in free publicity from them.

Schedule: Nothing public.
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