Patt Morrison for April 10, 2012

Rick Santorum suspends his presidential campaign

Rick Santorum suspends campaign

Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

Surrounded by members of his family, Republican presidential candidate, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum announces he will be suspending his campaign during a press conference at Gettysburg Hotel on April 10, 2012 in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

And then there were…three? two? one? Now that Rick Santorum has announced that he’s ending his campaign, the GOP race might just be a done deal, with Mitt Romney claiming his prize as the presumptive presidential nominee.

In his announcement today, Santorum cited his daughter Bella’s recent hospitalization and the toll the race has taken on his family. But the underlying truth is that he wasn’t poised to go the distance. Santorum suffered three trouncings at the polls last week in Wisconsin, Maryland and the District of Columbia, the outlook for his home state of Pennsylvania next week is less than promising, and his campaign coffers are dwindling.

Santorum's resignation clears the path to the nomination for Romney, who is for many the candidate of default rather than choice; at this point he has secured only 60 percent of the delegates he needs. The long slog through the primaries has produced little more than voter fatigue. But with a less crowded pool, Republicans can now focus on the shared mission of defeating Obama in November.

WEIGH IN:

Will conservatives rally around the more moderate Romney? Does Newt Gingrich or Ron Paul still have a snowball’s chance? If you’re a Santorum supporter, how will you vote on June 5th?

Guests:

Bill Schneider, distinguished senior fellow and resident scholar at Third Way, a moderate think tank

Jon Fleischman, Republican strategist; founder and publisher of FlashReport.org


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