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Rick Santorum: George W. Bush Didn't Call Out 'Radical Islam' Enough

The dark horse presidential candidate says he told Bush what to do.
NEW ORLEANS, LA - MAY 31: Former U.S. sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) speaks during the final day of the 2014 Republican Leadership Conference on May 31, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Some of the biggest names in the Republican Party made appearances at the 2014 Republican Leadership Conference, which hosts 1,500 delegates from across the country through May 31.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - MAY 31: Former U.S. sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) speaks during the final day of the 2014 Republican Leadership Conference on May 31, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Some of the biggest names in the Republican Party made appearances at the 2014 Republican Leadership Conference, which hosts 1,500 delegates from across the country through May 31.

Photographer: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

When President Obama warns against calling the Islamic State "Islamic," when he asks people to think of the movement and quasi-nation as a perversion of Islam, his supporters often point out that George W. Bush beat him to the podium. "Islam is peace," said the 43rd president less than a week after September 11, 2001. "These terrorists don't represent peace. They represent evil and war." 

Unlike Obama, Bush did sometimes refer to "radical Islam." To some conservatives, however, he didn't do it enough—"not with enough frequency or detail to change perceptions," as Daniel Pipes put it in 2005. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, who is giving a series of foreign policy speeches in the run-up to CPAC, is telling conservatives that the Bush critics were right. And he's reminding them that he tried to save Bush from himself.