The megalomaniacal Donald doesn't seem to get a lot, and certainly not Santorum. As he told CNN's Ashleigh Banfield yesterday:
Rick Santorum was a sitting senator who in re-election lost by 19 points, to my knowledge the most in the history of this country for a sitting senator to lose by 19 points. It's unheard of. Then he goes out and says oh okay I just lost by the biggest margin in history and now I'm going to run for president. Tell me, how does that work?... That's like me saying I just failed a test. Now I'm going to apply for admission to the Wharton School of Finance. Okay? He just failed a test... And now he's going to run for president. So, I don't get Rick Santorum. I don't get that whole thing.
So... you're not allowed back in after you lose, whether it's in school, business, or politics -- or whatever?
It's certainly true that Santorum lost badly in 2006 and that his loss seemed to spell his end in politics. I remember celebrating his loss that night, along with many other Republican losses, and thinking that this ridiculous extremist, this joke, had only gotten what he'd deserved. But we must remember that the 2006 midterms were bad pretty much across the board for Republicans. Santorum would have lost anyway, I suspect, but the size of his defeat had a lot to do with the Democratic wave that flipped Congress. And of course he lost in Pennsylvania, a purple-to-blue state, not a Republican stronghold like, say, Alabama or Utah.
Regardless, why should his loss six years ago disqualify him? Why should failing a test disqualify you from getting into Wharton or any other school? You might as well tell Tom Brady he can't play football next year because he lost the Super Bowl. Please. It's a stupid argument.
And the fact is, Santorum is connecting with Republican voters in a real way. The Romney-backing Trump may not get that either, and it may be somewhat surprising that Santorum has found such success recently, but there you go. (It's hardly surprising that Trump supports Mitt, and otherwise would likely have gone to Newt. He clearly understands, and values, shameless opportunism and self-whoring, not the sincerity and, yes, integrity that seems to be driving Santorum.)
Besides, if you want failure, you need look no further than Trump's own career -- for example, the USFL, the Trump Shuttle, Trump Vodka, Trump Mortgage, massive debt, bailouts by banks, bankrupties... oh, one could go on and on. See here and here for the details of these and other failures.
Why doesn't Trump just take his own advice and give up?