Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) on Friday signaled he was "actively considering" putting his name in contention for the 2012 presidential race.

While Santorum later said he has "no great burning desire to be president," he stressed in a letter obtained by The Corner that he still had "a burning desire to have a different president of the United States."

He then urged supporters to donate to his political action committee, which he said was focused on stopping the Obama White House in 2010 and 2012.

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"Through your support for America’s Foundation, we’ve engaged the left on fundamental issues ranging from control of the U.S. Census to Health Care, abortion and the huge spike in the size of government," he said in the lengthy letter, railing on groups like ACORN and the White House's approach to foreign policy. "Together, we’ve thrown down enough road-blocks to stall the most damaging elements of the Obama agenda."

Santorum added, "[Y]ou and I have a real, honest-to-goodness opportunity to defeat Barack ObamaBarack Hussein Obama Chelsea Manning tests positive for COVID-19 The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by National Industries for the Blind - Tight security for Capitol rally; Biden agenda slows Obama backs Trudeau in Canadian election MORE in 2012. As much as I hate to use these words, I think it’s obvious Americans are now hungry for 'real change.' "

The former Republican senator's message this week is as undeniably political as it is surprisingly early. Obama has not yet finished his first year in office, and the 2010 midterm elections are still months away.

But it is nonetheless the latest in a series of escalating signals Santorum has sent about his interest in the White House.

As early as 2009, Santorum was traveling to battleground states like Iowa and South Carolina. He used those opportunities to hone his conservative credentials, only acknowledging in December he was "absolutely taking a look" at a presidential bid.

But Santorum's statement on Friday, while filled with slight equivocations, is still his strongest statement to date on a possible 2012 presidential bid. That process starts, he seemed to suggest, with a string of Republican victories in this year's midterm contests.

"The best way to exploit that vulnerability is delivering a crushing defeat to his pals in Congress in 2010," Santorum said, again asking for donations. "I hope you’ll join me in making that happen. Because their values just don’t line up with the values you and I, and a majority of Americans, hold most dear."