Santorum blames 'abortion culture'

Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) said Tuesday that America's "abortion culture" is at the heart of problems with the nation's Social Security system. 

The likely 2012 presidential contender, who earned a reputation as a hardcore social conservative during his time in Congress, said thanks to the number of abortions in the United States each year, not enough children are being born to support the system in the long term.  

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"The Social Security system, in my opinion, is a flawed design, period," Santorum said in a Tuesday morning interview with WEZS Radio in Laconia, N.H. "But having said that, the design would work a lot better if we had stable demographic trends." 

Santorum said the reason for the trouble is that "we don't have enough workers to support the retirees. Well, a third of all the young people in America are not in America today because of abortion."  

The comments came in response to a question from a caller who pinpointed abortion as the reason for issues related to Social Security and Medicare. Santorum thanked the caller for making the point and said he was "absolutely right." 

"We have seven children, so we're doing our part to fund the Social Security system," Santourm added.

The former senator has long been an outspoken opponent of abortion.

In the same interview, Santorum continued to question the U.S. posture in Libya. The former senator said the concern now is whether al Qaeda or the Muslim Brotherhood have "taken hold" of the rebel cause against Moammar Gadhafi. 

Warning that the U.S. could end up with a more dangerous situation if "radical Islamists" end up in charge of the country, Santorum said President Obama has badly mishandled the military effort.  

Santorum is spending the day meeting with activists and lawmakers in the first-in-the-nation primary state and is slated to headline a GOP dinner in Concord later Tuesday evening.