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Campaigning in the era of YouTube: Rick Santorum

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 25 2012 11:58 a.m. MST

Republican presidential candidate, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum autographs a book after speaking inside the First Baptist Church of Okeechobee gymnasium in Okeechobee, Fla., Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012.

Associated Press

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Former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum has never hidden his values-based beliefs and campaign, and many of his YouTube videos share those convictions while highlighting his philosophies on freedom, family and the United States of America.

Fresh off an Iowa win — a win that was originally thought to have belonged to Mitt Romney — Santorum is pressing ahead in Florida, holding firm on his message.

In a campaign announcement on June 6, 2011, Santorum discussed the national debt, the Defense of Marriage Act, federal funding of abortions, immigration, the American dream and the constitution.

Many of these issues have been discussed by Santorum consistently, since his time serving as a Pennsylvania senator, to today, as a candidate for president. In a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2011, Santorum again focused on these themes, saying, "America is a great moral enterprise. What I read to you about being endowed by a creator, is a moral enterprise. It's a belief — it's a belief in the dignity of every human person."

One theme Santorum has hammered on consistently is the breakdown of the family. In an October GOP debate, Santorum discussed the need for policies that support families. In an Iowa debate, he also discussed two-parent homes and their impact on poverty levels.

Santorum's own family has featured in his campaign, from the Santorum Iowa Family Tour to ads, concession speeches and stories.

Santorum has garnered praise from a variety of people, including Glenn Beck, who called him "the next George Washington," and Sarah Palin, who discussed his consistency on Iran, abortion and taxes.

Some clips that have led to criticisms of Santorum include videos where Santorum states that the pursuit of happiness without responsibility harms America, that birth control enables sex outside of marriage and that President Barack Obama's marriage is an example to African-Americans.

Santorum was also booed by students while discussing gay marriage in New Hampshire.

In what may be the most unique video title applied to a political candidate, the clip, "Rick Santorum On Angry Birds, IPhone, BlackBerry, Ice Cream & Mail-Order Brides" shows an informal interview on the road with Santorum in Iowa.

While family values may be the foundation of Santorum's campaign, he also doesn't hesitate to talk foreign policy, going head-to-head with candidate Ron Paul during the CNN-Tea party debate. In an interview with Candy Crowley, Santorum also defends his comment that President Barack Obama is an appeaser.

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