SEARCH

Entries in Rick Santorum (3)

Friday
Feb172012

‘Big Labor’ Skeletons In Rick Santorum’s Closet: Are They Real?

ABC News(BOSTON) -- With Rick Santorum hot on his heels, Mitt Romney is launching a new line of attack against his resurging GOP rival.

“Big Labor’s Favorite Senator” read the bold headline on the Romney camp’s latest opposition research e-mail to reporters, which was rife with examples of Santorum breaking Republican ranks to -- according to the e-mails -- cozy up with unions.

But the unions Romney accuses Santorum of supporting don’t feel the same way.

“There is no support for Rick Santorum in the labor movement,” said Rick Bloomingdale, president of the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO., part of a nationwide union which is a multi-million contributor to President Obama's campaigns. “That just shows how far right that this race has moved. The fact that Rick Santorum is being considered a moderate is the most absurd thing I’ve ever heard.”

According to the AFL-CIO’s yearly report card on Senate voting records, Santorum voted “right,” or in support of labor unions, about 13 percent of the time in 2006 and 11 percent of the time in 2005, placing him on par with the majority of Senate Republicans.

“How can you even begin to believe that’s supportive of labor?” Bloomingdale said of Santorum’s voting record. “Did he give us a couple of votes throughout his career? Sure. But he voted against working families much more than he voted for them.”

Jack Shea, president of the Allegheny County Labor Council, which represents union workers in and around Pittsburgh, said his group fought against Santorum during his House and Senate campaigns.

“We never considered Rick to be a friend of the worker, not at all,” Shea said. “The only time Rick Santorum was close to blue collar was when he was putting his shirt on.”

In the 16 years Santorum served in Congress, he supported pro-union measures a handful of times.

As a freshman senator in 1996, Santorum voted against a national “right to work” bill that would have enabled workers to opt-out of paying union dues.

He also voted in favor of barring companies from firing striking workers and supported a bill to re-affirm the Davis-Bacon Act, which ensures that construction workers on federal projects are paid at least as much as their private sector counterparts.

Santorum said he supported these pro-union measures out of respect to the standing laws of the state he was representing.

“I would change those laws within Pennsylvania, but I’m not going to have the federal government change the law for the state of Pennsylvania,” Santorum said on Fox News Sunday in January. “You don’t have the federal government impose those [laws] on the state when the state decided differently.”

As Romney works to paint Santorum as a union supporter, he is portraying himself as the candidate that will take on “union bosses.”

“I happen to believe that you can protect the interests of American taxpayers, and you can protect a great industry like automobiles without having to give in to the [United Auto Workers union], and I sure won’t,” Romney said Wednesday at a campaign stop in Michigan.

But Romney’s plea to non-union voters is a precarious one. The similarly pro-“right to work” argument he made during his 2008 White House bid paid off, especially in Michigan where Romney and Santorum are both going all-in this time around.

While the 28 percent of unionized Michigan voters split evenly between Romney and his GOP rival John McCain in 2008, non-union households favored Romney by 11 points, helping him win the state.

But the opposite story unfolded in 2000 when McCain and then-rival George W. Bush split the non-union vote evenly and McCain was boosted to victory by the support of union voters, 61 percent of whom chose McCain compared to the 34 percent who chose Bush.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jan112012

Presidential Candidates' Homes Range from Modest to Many

Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Though they are all vying to live in the White House, the GOP presidential contenders all have charming and sometimes lavish homes to tide them over.  Even the current commander-in-chief still has a multi-million dollar Georgian revival mansion in Illinois -- just in case.

From a Washington, D.C., townhouse to a tony mini-mansion, here are the houses that the seven rivals currently call home.  That is, until or if one of them starts having mail forwarded to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Newt Gingrich -- McLean, Va.
Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker and U.S. Congressman from Georgia, purchased his home in McLean, Va., for $995,000 in 2000.  It has 5,206 square feet and features a master bathroom with a marble floor and a chandelier.

Jon Huntsman -- Washington, D.C.
If Jon Huntsman's home looks familiar, it's because it was where the contestants of Bravo's Top Chef resided during Season 7.  The former Utah governor and ambassador to China owns a five-bedroom townhouse in Washington, D.C.  The house was sold for $3.6 million in June 2010, according to public records.

Ron Paul -- Lake Jackson, Texas
Texas Rep. Ron Paul's four-bedroom ranch house in Lake Jackson has been on the market since April 2011.  The Pauls have moved to a nearby home.  His site, BuyRonPaulsHouse.com, says the home has "four bedrooms, five bathrooms and is approximately 5,500 square feet in size."  The asking price is $325,000 while the median list price of homes in Lake Jackson is $139,800, according to Zillow.  The house has an in-ground swimming pool, two lofts and an office.

Rick Perry -- Austin, Texas
While waiting for renovations to the governor's mansion to be completed, Perry reportedly moved to a home in a gated community in Austin.  The house features five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, three dining rooms and a guest house.  The New York Times said the home, which has a balcony, is worth nearly $2 million and sits on three acres.  On Realtor.com, the home on Hickory Creek Drive is said to have 5,780 square feet.

Mitt Romney -- Wolfeboro, N.H.
The former Massachusetts governor and wealthiest GOP candidate owns the most real estate, including a property on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.  According to The New York Times, he recently sold his homes in Belmont, Mass. and Park City, Utah, but maintains another in La Jolla, Calif., for which he bought in 2008 for $12 million, Zillow reported.

Rick Santorum -- Great Falls, Va.
Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, lives in a Great Falls, Va., house that reportedly cost $2 million in 2007.

President Barack Obama -- Chicago, Ill.
President Obama reportedly paid $1.65 million for his home on the South Side of Chicago in June 2005, Zillow reports.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jan102012

New Hampshire Primary: Who's the Richest Candidate of Them All?

Nick M Do/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In Tuesday's New Hampshire primary, there are no poor people among the front-runners.

According to financial disclosures filed by the candidates, and to analyses of those filings by watchdog groups and news organizations, none of the six Republicans is worth much less than $2 million.  Some, including Romney and Huntsman, have a great deal more money.

As for the front-running Democrat on the ballot -- President Obama -- he, too, isn't anywhere near the so-called "99 percent": An analysis of the President's financial filings by OpenSecrets.org assigns him a net worth of $2.8 million to $11.8 million. Forbes puts it at $10 million, with the potential for his earning "a lot more after office."

See the net worth of the candidates below:

1. Mitt Romney, Former Governor of Massachusetts

Romney's Aug. 12 financial disclosures for the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) show him to have a net worth of between $190 and $250 million, making him by far the richest of the Republicans still standing.  Successful in his own right as a venture capitalist, he didn't exactly pull himself up by his bootstraps: His father was president of General Motors.

2. Jon Huntsman, Former Ambassador to China, Former Governor of Utah
Huntsman's OGE filing for Aug. 30 shows a net worth somewhere between $16 million and $105 million.  Forbes estimates it as $50 million.  The candidate stands to become significantly richer when his father dies: The elder Huntsman, founder of global chemical manufacturer Huntsman Corp, has a net worth estimated by Forbes at over $900 million.

3. Newt Gingrich, Former Speaker of the House

Gingrich's prime money-making years began in 1999, after his resignation from Congress.  He started a profitable consulting practice, The Gingrich Group, which reportedly earned in excess of $1.6 million from contracts with mortgage giant Freddie Mac.  As a lecturer, he earned fees of up to $50,000 per talk.  His net worth, according to his Office of Government Ethics filing for July 14, is at least $6.7 million.

4. Rick Perry, Governor of Texas
Perry's net worth -- approximately $3 million -- includes a one-third interest in a ranch in Haskell, Texas, according to his Dec. 15 OGE filing.  Some of his wealth has come from lucrative deals with friends and supporters.

5. Ron Paul, Congressman from Texas
Watchdog group OpenSecrets.org puts Paul's wealth at between $1.9 million and $5.2 million, making the diminutive doctor the 87th richest member of the House of Representatives.

6. Rick Santorum, Former Pennsylvania Senator
The former senator has a net worth of up to $2 million according to his Aug. 2 filing with the Office of Government Ethics.  He earned some of it working as a commentator for News Corp's Fox News, which paid him just under $240,000 in 2010 and the first six months of 2011.  He earned more than $330,000 as a consultant to Consul Energy in Pennsylvania and to two lobbying firms in Washington, D.C.

7. Barack Obama, President of the United States
The first couple's joint tax return shows income last year of $1.73 million, down from $5.5 million the year before, with much of it coming from sales of two of the president's books, Dreams From my Father and The Audacity of Hope. Citing financial records, Forbes pins President Obama's worth at $10 million. Like every former president, Obama has the potential for his earning a fortune in book deals and speaking engagement when he leave office -- whenever that may be.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio