Santorum’s Strategy

Weeks after the 2010 midterms, Mike Biundo, a veteran New Hampshire political operative, met with a slew of presidential contenders. He was offered a couple of gigs but nothing piqued his interest. He mulled other options, including a bid for the state GOP chairmanship. But after talking with friends, he decided against it. Maybe, he told his family, it’d be best to take a break from politics, to try something else.

Earlier that year, the 43-year-old Biundo had managed a successful congressional race in the Granite State, and from 2007 to 2008, he’d been an adviser to Rudy Giuliani’s presidential campaign. Exhausted after two grueling cycles, he didn’t feel compelled to enlist. Since his early twenties, the Long Island native has been on the trail, first gaining notice in 1996 when he worked as an aide to Pat Buchanan. As he glanced at the emerging field, he didn’t see a Buchanan-type, an appealing insurgent.

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