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The Duggars endorse Rick Santorum for president

"He's the next best thing to Jesus"

The Duggar family is endorsing Rick Santorum's campaign for president -- even if he doesn't "want to make black people's lives better" with welfare and Medicare!

The Duggar family is throwing its support (and the power of their child army) behind Rick Santorum's controversial run for the White House.

"You're not going to find the perfect candidate unless it's Jesus Christ," Jim Bob Duggar, the father of 19 and the star of the TLC show 19 Kids and Counting, said on the campaign trail this week.

Since the Christian Messiah hasn't put in a bid for the Oval Office in November (give it time…), Duggar endorsed his second choice: Rick Santorum.

On Monday, Duggar and 12 of his children crisscrossed Iowa campaigning for the über-conservative, Christian, former Pennsylvania senator just ahead of the all-important Iowa Caucus.

"He's somebody that doesn't take a poll to know where he stands," the Duggar patriarch told a crowd at a pizza restaurant north of Des Moines. "I'm asking families, Christians all over America, to get behind Rick Santorum for the next president of the United States."

Duggars share video message to their miscarried baby >>

He later added, "[Santorum] is somebody that goes and really just votes from his heart and votes on his convictions, votes on things based on the Constitution of the United States and the Bible. And that's the kind of man we want to support."

Duggar matriarch Michelle is recording robocalls for Santorum, ABC News reports.

The Duggars' public Santorum endorsement comes only days after pop star Kelly Clarkson came under fire on social networking sites for her backing of fellow Texan Ron Paul -- a candidate some American voters view as racist and homophobic.

Santorum is facing similar character issues. On Monday, he told a crowd in Iowa that he doesn't want to make "black people's lives better by giving them other people's money." The comment came on the heels of a discussion about expanding Medicare, a program Santorum argues makes Americans more dependent on the federal government.

The Duggar family grieves for baby Jubilee >>

Santorum's statement stirred controversy not only for its racial implications, but also because statistics show that 84 percent of Iowa residents on public assistance are Caucasian, compared with just nine percent of African-Americans.

Santorum also has a storied history with the fight for gay rights. Yeah -- he's against that, too. During his tenure in the Senate, Santorum frequently condemned homosexuality and famously compared same-sex love with bestiality.

The politician, nonetheless, remains popular with big name voters. News Corp magnate Rupert Murdoch and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin have also endorsed Santorum.

Photo credit: WENN.com
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