Former Republican Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania plans to announce for president June 6 in Somerset County, near where his immigrant grandfather worked as a coal miner, according to a source close to the campaign.
It’s a resonant setting for the formal launch of a campaign that Santorum has been preparing for more than a year. On the stump, Santorum frequently talks of his grandfather, Pietro, who came from Italy, as an illustration of the exceptional nature of the United States.
“This location is significant because when Sen. Santorum's grandfather left fascist Italy, he came to this country for America's freedom and the opportunity our nation afforded him,” said a person close to the campaign.
The site is also not far from Shanksville, where United Airlines Flight 93 crashed as passengers wrestled the plane from terrorists bent on striking Washington during the Sept. 11 attacks. Santorum also talks about the need to confront and fight radical Islamism and to maintain a strong national defense.