Santorum’s Puerto Rico English Comments Fodder for Colbert, Romney Supporters

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March 16 2012 4:48 PM

Santorum’s Puerto Rico English Comments Fodder for Colbert, Romney Supporters

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(Presidenial candidate and former Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) (R-PA) (4th L), his wife Karen Santorum (4th R) and his son's Patrick (2nd R), 9, and Peter (3rd R), 12, and walk through the Old City March 15, 2012 in San Juan, Puerto Rico.)

Photo by Christopher Gregory/Getty Images

We all know the fight for the GOP nomination is getting to be a nail-biter, but a Romney-Santorum showdown in Puerto Rico?

The latest battleground is a commonwealth rather than a state, but comments about statehood is part of why all eyes are on the Northeastern Caribbean primary this weekend. In an interview this week, Rick Santorum suggested erroneously that to become a state, Puerto Rico would have to declare English it’s official language.

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The comments have given Romney and his supporters, like Puerto Rico Governor Luis Fortuño, plenty of takedown fodder. Stephen Colbert also poked fun at a few of Santorum’s recent imaginative quotes, saying, “It takes serious cojones to go to Puerto Rico and tell them to stop saying, ‘cojones.’ ”

With the delegate math becoming more crucial for both Santorum and Romney—who finished a disappointing third in Mississippi and Alabama this week—Puerto Rico’s 20 delegates could have strategic importance. On Saturday, we may discover the word Santoromentum doesn’t translate well.

Video produced by Krishnan Vasuvedan

Ben Johnson is the producer of Marketplace Tech from American Public Media.

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