Since Rick Santorum's Monday announcement that he was ending his run for The White House, words of praise have poured in from social conservatives.
Santorum is being hailed as the hero of the far right--a true conservative who fought the good fight against a candidate with shaky conservative credentials, but with more money--many millions more.
And contrary to the predictions of most political pundits, the complimentary comments are all about Rick Santorum, with nary a word urging Republicans of every stripe to unite behind the party's nominee.
In fact, most statements released, and most interviews given, by leading social conservatives, do not even mention Mitt Romney. It's as though social conservatives are grudgingly accepting the inevitable while giving Romney their version of the silent treatment.
This raises, for Romney, the spectre of social conservatives sitting on their hands during the general election--preferring to wait another four years to try again for a nominee more to their liking.
Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, said as much in an interview with CNN's Dana Bash.
He echoed the sentiment of other leading social conservative groups in saying that "conservative activists are so unenthusiastic about Romney that many are likely to turn their efforts away from the Presidential race, and concentrate on Congressional contests".
There are those "experts" who recall that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton waged a bitter battle, with much negativity, through the Democratic primaries of 2008--before coming together to display a united front against the Republicans.
But the Obama versus Clinton contest was not nearly as divisive as the Romney/Santorum battle. And for those who don't think conservatives would cut off their nose to spite their face; who don't think that conservatives would sit idly by and watch Romney lose--I offer this reminder.
Many of the conservatives who don't like Mitt Romney are the same conservatives who allowed our country to lose its triple A credit rating rather than compromise.