Santorum: GOP loses when it picks moderates

March 7, 2014 - 4:35 PM

OXON HILL, Md. (AP) — Former Sen. Rick Santorum says Republicans lose elections when they nominate moderates.

Santorum ran for president in 2012 as a social conservative and is weighing another bid. He said Friday the GOP should not sacrifice conservatism in an effort to expand the party's appeal.

The former senator says John McCain and Mitt Romney were moderate nominees who still lost.

Santorum says middle class voters stayed home on Election Day because Romney didn't speak to them. Santorum says President Barack Obama won re-election because economically vulnerable voters were afraid of Romney.

Santorum is speaking to conservative activists near Washington at the Conservative Political Action Conference.