Rick Santorum’s Hobby Horse

A couple of days ago, Roy Edroso noticed that conservative writers are irate, this time about the media’s coverage of Rick Santorum’s interest in pornography — which the candidate believes has brought about “a pandemic of harm” upon the nation. “Why is this suddenly coming up now?” asked a Hot Air blogger. “Did the media simply notice a longstanding statement on Santorum’s website about porn or is he actively circulating it, presumably to counter the meme that he’s anti-woman?”

It’s not that complicated. Amid all the problems facing this country, the fight against pornography is what Santorum has chosen to champion. Here he is on CNN this morning, defending his claim that the Obama administration’s Justice Department “seems to favor pornographers over children and families”:

“Well you have to look at the proof that’s in the prosecution. Under the Bush administration, pornographers were prosecuted much more rigorously under existing law than they are under the Obama administration. So you draw your conclusion,” Santorum said. “My conclusion is they have not put a priority on prosecuting these cases, and in doing so, they are exposing children to a tremendous amount of harm. And that to me says they’re putting the unenforcement of this law and putting children at risk as a result of that.”

My guess is whatever bump Santorum has gotten from the issue, he’s about to enjoy seriously diminishing returns. Reacting to Santorum’s CNN appearance, Republican strategist Ron Christie remarked on Twitter, “I like Rick Santorum. I really do. But discussing how he would get rid of porn as a presidential priority doesn’t seem presidential.”

Even so, I’m vaguely sympathetic. I mean, if you were a Republican candidate for president, would you really want to spend your time talking about an improving economy?