Santorum Backer Friess: Romney Will Make Great President

Friday, 08 Jun 2012 04:46 PM

By Martin Gould and John Bachman

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The multi-millionaire who bankrolled Rick Santorum’s run for the White House is totally happy with Mitt Romney, the man who beat his chosen candidate, he revealed in an exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV.

Foster Friess said now he has had a chance to meet Romney he realizes that he would make a great president.

“I sat next to him at a fundraiser in Phoenix. When you look a guy in the eye, you can tell a little bit about him and this is a decent man,” said the multi-millionaire retired investment manager, during the interview at the Conservative Political Actioin Conference in Chicago.

Watch our exclusive interview. Story continues below.

"He has the country’s best interest at heart. He loves America. He doesn’t have to have this job to get rich or have a lot of perks. He’s had that. Now he just wants to serve.

“He’s my guy. I believe in him. He’s going to be great for the country. As a conservative, I’m wholly behind him.”

As for Romney’s running mate, Friess said he is as excited as anyone as to whom is picked. “There’s an unbelievable list of 10, 12, 15 people who would be very good,” he said.

Friess spent more than $1 million supporting Santorum’s run for the Republican presidential nomination and said he was pleased with the amount of attention the campaign received. He believes the former Pennsylvania senator will be a major force in GOP politics for years to come.

“He brought a lot of important issues such as how do we deal with the spiritual poverty in our nation,” said Friess. “He also has done a great job shepherding in the welfare reform act: when he was 38 years old, he was a manager on the Senate floor.

“And before anyone he highlighted the challenges of Ahmadinejad and Chavez,” he added referring to the leaders of Iran and Venezuela.

“He best represents the Reagan three legs of that stool — the nation’s security, social conservatism and also fiscal responsibility. He has a huge role to play.”

Now the race for the Republican nomination for the White House is, to all intents and purposes, over, Friess is turning his attention to other party battles, in particular the challenge to Utah’s long-standing senator Orrin Hatch. Friess is backing challenger Dan Liljenquist.

Friess pointed out that Hatch will be well in his 80s by the time another six-year term in the Upper Chamber is over, and it’s time he quit so he can spend more time with his family.

“Orrin Hatch has served the country so well and he feels an obligation to continue to serve. But I’m at an age now that if I were 80, I’d be wanting to spend more time with my grandchildren.

“I’m 72 and I’m just glad I sold my business when I did,” said Friess, who turned his investment company over to AMG in the early years of the 21st century.

“You don’t know many businessmen sitting back in their rocking chair at age 75, saying, ‘Hey I wish I would have spent more time with my business.’ “

Friess said he believes the run-off Utah primary between Liljenquist and Hatch could end up similarly to the Indiana GOP primary when upstart Richard Mourdoch defeated six-term Sen. Dick Lugar, who joined the Upper Chamber at the same time as Hatch.

He said former state Sen. Liljenquist, 37, did “a remarkable job” transforming the Utah state pension scheme, and was also “able to orchestrate a Medicaid reform which even all the Democrats in the legislature bought into and for which President Obama gave him a waiver.

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