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Santorum Ends 364-Day White House Bid

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Santorum's presidential campaign lasted two months longer than Tim Pawlenty's and Rick Perry's combined

ricksantorum13.jpgAs late as November 2011 Rick Santorum would likely not be on anyone's list of the last four Republican presidential candidates remaining in the race come April.

The former Pennsylvania U.S. Senator's remarkable underdog run to win 11 states and become the chief anti-Romney challenger surprised many in his ability to outlast other more well-funded campaigns like Rick Perry and Herman Cain and outperform others like Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul.

The seven previous Republican candidates who ended their White House bids are a mixed bag of politicians who burned through their money too early (Tim Pawlenty), flamed out during the debates (Rick Perry), failed to sustain early momentum (Michele Bachmann), departed due to scandal (Herman Cain), or never caught on fire to begin with (Thad McCotter, Jon Huntsman).

Santorum outlasted them all - running on a (comparatively) shoestring budget for most of the 364 days since he launched his presidential exploratory committee on April 13th of last year.

Since forming that committee, Santorum had the third longest run behind Newt Gingrich at 405 days (and counting) and Mitt Romney at 366 days (and counting). (Ron Paul launched his committee 351 days ago).

Since officially announcing his presidential candidacy on June 6, 2011, Santorum had the fourth longest campaign at 310 days behind Gingrich (336), Paul (334), and Romney (314).

Jon Huntsman's campaign lasted 210 days from the day of his formal campaign announcement, with Herman Cain coming in at 197 days, Michele Bachmann at 192, Rick Perry at 160, Tim Pawlenty at 84, and Thad McCotter at 83.

Length of 2012 Republican Presidential Campaigns

Candidate
Exploratory
Announced
Exited
# Days 1
# Days 2
Thad McCotter
July 1, 2011
July 2, 2011
September 22, 2011
84
83
Tim Pawlenty
March 21, 2011
May 23, 2011
August 14, 2011
147
84
Rick Perry
N/A
August 13, 2011
January 19, 2012
160
160
Michele Bachmann
June 13, 2011
June 27, 2011
January 4, 2012
206
192
Herman Cain
January 12, 2011
May 21, 2011
December 3, 2011
326
197
Jon Huntsman
May 3, 2011
June 21, 2011
January 16, 2012
259
210
Rick Santorum
April 13, 2011
June 6, 2011
April 10, 2012
364
310
Mitt Romney
April 11, 2011
June 2, 2011
Still in race
366
314
Ron Paul
April 26, 2011
May 13, 2011
Still in race
351
334
Newt Gingrich
March 3, 2011
May 11, 2011
Still in race
405
336
Note: Through April 10, 2012.

Santorum's bid was also longer than Gary Johnson's 252-day run as a Republican candidate and Buddy Roemer's 218-day run.

Johnson and Roemer are now seeking the Libertarian and Americans Elect nominations respectively.

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Remains of the Data

No Free Passes: States With 2 Major Party Candidates in Every US House Race

Indiana has now placed candidates from both major parties on the ballot in a nation-best 189 consecutive U.S. House races, with New Hampshire, Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana also north of 100 in a row.

Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


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