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Santorum stands by ‘snob’ comment, says conservatives ‘singled out’ and ‘ridiculed’ at colleges

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Former senator Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) on Sunday stood by his statement that President Obama is a “snob” because he wants John Amis AP Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. senator Rick Santorum campaigns at a tea party town hall meeting, Saturday, in Hixson, Tenn. “everybody in America to go to college.”

“Now getting to college has been part of the American dream for generations, Senator,” ABC’s George Stephanopoulos asked Santorum in an interview on “This Week. “Why does articulating an aspiration make the president a snob?”

“I think because there are lot of people in this country that have no desire or no aspiration to go to college, because they have a different set of skills and desires and dreams that don’t include college,” Santorum said. “And to sort of lay out there that somehow this should be everybody’s goal, I think, devalues the tremendous work that people who, frankly, don’t go to college and don’t want to go to college because they have a lot of other talents and skills that, frankly, college, you know, four-year colleges may not be able to assist them.”

He added that “there’s all sorts of things that people can do to upgrade their skills.”

Santorum on Saturday had told a crowd of more than 1,000 conservative activists in Troy, Mich., that “not all folks are gifted in the same way” and that “there are good decent men and women who go out and work hard every day and put their skills to test that aren’t taught by some liberal college professor trying to indoctrinate them.”

Asked by Stephanopoulos on Sunday about the “indoctrination” comment, Santorum defended the remark, arguing that conservatives are “singled out” and “ridiculed” at most American colleges.

“I mean, you look at the colleges and universities,” Santorum said. “This is not something that’s new for most Americans, is how liberal our colleges and universities are and how many children in fact are – look, I’ve gone through it. I went through it at Penn State.”

“You talk to most kids who go to college who are conservatives, and you are singled out, you are ridiculed, you are — I can tell you personally. . . I went through a process where I was docked for my conservative views. This is sort of a regular routine. You know the statistic . . . that 62 percent of kids who enter college with some sort of faith commitment leave without it. This is not a neutral setting.”

Stephanopoulos asked whether Santorum’s comments meant that he thought there was “something wrong with encouraging college education.”

“No, not at all, but understand that we have some real problems at our college campuses with political correctness, with an ideology that is forced upon people who, you know, who may not agree with the politically correct left doctrine,” Santorum responded. “And one of the things that I’ve spoken out on and will continue to speak out is to make sure that conservative and more mainstream, common-sense conservative and principles that have made this country great are reflected in our college courses and with college professors. And at many, many, and I would argue most institutions in this country, that simply isn’t the case.’

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