After victories, Santorum lands in Texas seeking support, money

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by BRAD WATSON

WFAA

Posted on February 8, 2012 at 7:45 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 8 at 7:55 PM

McKINNEY - Presidential hopeful Rick Santorum campaigned in North Texas Wednesday after his string of victories in Missouri, Minnesota and Colorado.

It's his best performance in the hunt for the GOP presidential race.

But to maintain the momentum, he needs money and support from his base, and Santorum looked for both here.

Santorum swept into North Texas, heavy with social conservatives and Republican donors, pitching that he's a better alternative to President Obama than Mitt Romney.

"We're the best person to challenge Barack Obama," he told reporters in McKinney. "We present the clearest contrast in this race and you know, folks realize that Gov. Romney isn't going to have the most money in the general election. We need someone who is going to overwhelm them because they have the right message for America."

Santorum spoke to area pastors about his personal faith, and how, as president, he'd speak up about the role of faith in society.

He didn't disappoint on the moral issues, saying, "I don't think God will bless this country if this country continues to kill over a million children every year in abortion."

The event closed with a prayer and the pastors laying hands on Santorum.

But he also came here seeking hands laying out money.

Santorum said his campaign raised more than $400,000 the past two days, and this visit is also heavy in fundraising.

Santorum needs the money to try and broaden his appeal beyond Christian conservatives, and to fight on in Michigan and then the Super Tuesday primary states if he's to stay in the race to the Texas primary, which could be in late April, May or June.

Can his campaign endure? "We think we'll do very, very well here in the State of Texas, so we're excited about that possibility," he said.

After that McKinney stop, Santorum attended a fundraising luncheon at Dallas' Northwood Club. Then his campaign indicated he spent the rest of the afternoon in personal fundraising appeals, before events later in Allen and Plano.

Santorum has events in Tulsa and Oklahoma City on Thursday.

E-mail bwatson@wfaa.com

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