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Santorum: Dems have a chance in 2020 if they pick someone ‘unexpected’

Former GOP Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.) on Sunday said he believes the Democratic Party could win in 2020 if they pick someone "unexpected" as their party's presidential nominee.

Santorum, asked if there were any potential Democratic candidates he was afraid of, pointed to previous presidential contests, saying all of the Democratic candidates who won were "not the favorite" at the time. 

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"When the Democrats win, they pick someone unexpected or someone who’s not the favorite," Santorum, a CNN analyst, said on CNN's "State of the Union."

"[Former Presidents] Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonHere's who Biden is now considering for budget chief The Reagan era is over Bill introduced to create RBG monument on Capitol Hill MORE, Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaHere's who Biden is now considering for budget chief Pentagon issues report revealing ex-White House doctor 'belittled' subordinates, violated alcohol policies The Reagan era is over MORE, Jimmy Carter," he listed. "When they pick [failed Democratic presidential nominees] John KerryJohn KerryOVERNIGHT ENERGY: House Democrats reintroduce road map to carbon neutrality by 2050 | Kerry presses oil companies to tackle climate change | Biden delays transfer of sacred lands for copper mine Kerry presses oil companies to tackle climate change Biden, Brazil and the Amazon MORE or Al GoreAlbert (Al) Arnold GoreAl Jazeera launching conservative media platform Exclusive 'Lucky' excerpt: Vow of Black woman on Supreme Court was Biden turning point Paris Agreement: Biden's chance to restore international standing MORE or Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHere's who Biden is now considering for budget chief Clinton praises Dolly Parton's cold shoulder top from vaccination: 'Shall we make this a trend?' Trump was unhinged and unchanged at CPAC MORE, they lose." 

"And so I’m hoping for Bernie [Sanders] or Elizabeth [Warren] or somebody like that," he said. "Someone tired, old — [former] Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenThe West needs a more collaborative approach to Taiwan Abbott's medical advisers were not all consulted before he lifted Texas mask mandate House approves George Floyd Justice in Policing Act MORE." 

"Put them out there, we’ll win," Santorum concluded. "If they pick someone new, then I think they have a chance."

The Democratic presidential primary is expected to be crowded, with dozens of contenders eyeing a bid. Multiple Democrats who have lost previous presidential runs, including Biden and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersOn The Money: Democrats deals to bolster support for relief bill | Biden tries to keep Democrats together | Retailers fear a return of the mask wars Democrats cut deals to bolster support for relief bill Hillicon Valley: High alert as new QAnon date approaches Thursday | Biden signals another reversal from Trump with national security guidance | Parler files a new case MORE (I-Vt.), have indicated that they will announce in the next few months whether they will run.

Rep. Adam KinzingerAdam Daniel KinzingerRepublicans, please save your party House GOP campaign chief: Not helpful for Trump to meddle in primaries Democrats snipe on policy, GOP brawls over Trump MORE (R-Ill.) on the "State of the Union" panel said that he believes Biden would be a "tough" candidate because of his legacy of centrism.

"The thing I think with the Democratic Party in 2020 is they’re going to end up with a far-left candidate," Kinzinger said, naming Sanders as someone he considers far-left. Sanders is a self-defined democratic socialist. 

"If it was a centrist party, I think they’d put somebody up like Joe Biden and unlike Sen. Santorum, I actually think Biden would be a really tough candidate," Kinzinger added.

Biden and Sanders have not yet said whether they are running.