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Gingrich-Santorum 'Unity Ticket' Could Have Toppled Romney Campaign

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This week it was revealed that a Gingrich-Santorum ticket was in talks at one point. The only catch? Both wanted to be President.

“We were close,” former Representative Bob Walker, an ally of Gingrich, said. “Everybody thought there was an opportunity.”

“It would have sent shock waves through the establishment and the Romney campaign,” said John Brabender, Santorum’s chief strategist, to Bloomberg Businessweek.com. “I couldn’t write an ad to match the political theater that would have created.”

The so-called "unity ticket" was discussed in the weeks leading up to the Michigan primary when Mitt Romney was struggling for support. Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum likely could have been the nominated ticket — that is, if they could have stopped squabbling over who would get to be President.

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“In the end, it was just too hard to negotiate,” Gingrich said.

When Romney squeaked through the Michigan primaries, the opportunity was lost.

“I was disappointed when Speaker Gingrich ultimately decided against this idea because it could have changed the outcome of the primary,” Santorum said. “More importantly, it could have changed the outcome of the general election.”

Both men made their cases for why they should be the ticket’s presidential nominee. Gingrich explained Rick Perry had just endorsed his run, he had just won South Carolina, and — yes, he made this argument — he was the more senior of the two.

Santorum’s camp, though, claimed that Gingrich’s campaign was a sinking ship and, at the end of it all, Santorum had won 11 states and tied two compared to Gingrich’s two wins.

Eventually, call it karma, both dropped out of the race as Romney easily won the Republican nomination.

Sources: Bloomberg News, Politico