Gingrich and Santorum open to running again in 2016

Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich both say they are open to running for president again in 2016.

The second- and fourth-place finishers from 2012 said in separate interviews that they are open to another run, though Santorum seems more apt.

“I’m certainly leaving the door open for that,’’ Santorum told Newsmax. “I’m making no commitments at this point, but we’re not doing anything inconsistent with running in 2016.’’

Gingrich, meanwhile, told the National Review Online's Robert Costa that he is also keeping his options open.

“I don’t rule it out, but we’re not spending any energy on it,” Gingrich said.

Republicans often nominate candidates who have run and lost before, particularly second-place finishers, but neither Santorum nor Gingrich is considered to be a major contender for the 2016 GOP nomination.

Gingrich is heading to one of the two states he won last year -- South Carolina -- for a few days next month, but is still working on retiring nearly $5 million in debt from his 2012 campaign, and the trip seems geared mostly toward that effort. Santorum, meanwhile, showed limited appeal outside the socially conservative areas in the South and the Great Plains.

For both of them, though, there is plenty of incentive to keep their options open even if a presidential campaign is unlikely.

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