Sanctus Santorum

By Bunch, Will | Mother Jones, December 2005 | Go to article overview

Sanctus Santorum


Bunch, Will, Mother Jones


RETAIL POLITICS

This past March, an interviewer for Christianity Today asked Senator Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) what he thought of Thomas Frank's What's the Matter with Kansas?, which posits that conservative politicians have whipped up working-class anger over social issues as a smoke screen for a real agenda to benefit large corporations. Santorum leapt on the question as if he'd been waiting for it. "That's just the kind of derogatory, elitist pablum," he declared, "that you get when people don't realize that there's a lot of people who don't put their treasure in this world and look for something more than just 'How much more money I can make?' They understand that life is more than a bank account. That's the postmodern view of the world, which is, 'It's all about me; it's all about how much I can get now for me.'" He concluded, "Thank God for Kansas."

Postmodernism aside, Santorum could be a poster boy for Frank's thesis. The day after the interview was published, he became the first member of Congress to visit the media scrum outside the hospice where Terri Schiavo lay dying. The senator, who had pushed for congressional intervention to keep Schiavo alive, noted that "I was in Tampa, I was 15 minutes away, and having worked on this case, I just felt an obligation to go by and pay my respects to the family."

Santorum didn't mention why he happened to be 15 minutes away. He had come to Tampa in part to attend a fundraising lunch organized by one of his corporate benefactors, Outback Steakhouses. And he'd flown in on the jet of another major donor, Wal-Mart.

Indeed, while Santorum has become perhaps the Senate's most outspoken member on hot-button social issues such as abortion and gay rights, much of his day-to-day work involves matters of interest to corporate America. This year has been typically busy. Santorum authored a bill that would relax overtime regulations and exempt numerous businesses from minimum-wage rules, a move particularly dear to the restaurant industry (thus the Outback Steakhouses event). He sponsored measures aiding campaign contributors, such as the private weather company AccuWeather (which would benefit from Santorum's proposed privatization of the National Weather Service); the fire-sprinkler industry; beer brewers; and the tomato grower Procacci Brothers, which is being accused of migrant-housing violations in Florida. And he has been pushing hard for Wal-Mart's agenda, which includes tort reform and changes in overtime rules-Wal-Mart faces a slew of lawsuits over sex discrimination and alleged overtime violations-as well as reform of charitable giving laws and a permanent repeal of the estate tax, which would benefit the billionaire heirs of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton. Wal-Mart's political action committee gave $10,000, the maximum allowable PAC donation, to Santorum in 2004, plus another $10,000 to Santorum's PAC.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Sanctus Santorum
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.