Presidential candidate Santorum coming to Dalton on Thursday

Presidential candidate Santorum coming to Dalton on Thursday

February 29th, 2012 by Chris Carroll in Local - Breaking News

Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum campaigns at a tea party town hall meeting, Saturday, Feb. 25 , 2012, in Hixson, Tenn.

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is expected to hold a campaign rally in Dalton Thursday at 8 a.m.

Dalton Mayor David Pennington and Georgia State Sen. Charlie Bethel, R-Dalton, said the rally will be held inside the City Council chambers at Dalton City Hall.

Santorum will speak before taking questions from the audience, but the former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania "will be on the road within an hour," Bethel said.

Pennington said the council chamber holds about 300 people, and he encouraged people to arrive early.

It will be Santorum's second visit to the Chattanooga area in the past week. On Saturday, he spoke at Abba's House in Hixson, where he elaborated a personal version of family values and famously called President Barack Obama a "snob" for saying all American children should go to college.

Santorum is expected to campaign in Atlanta after the Dalton rally, according to Bethel.

Santorum's Georgia visits also will come two days after fellow GOP presidential hopeful and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich held rallies in Dalton and Rome.

The announcement came as Super Tuesday sits six days away. Tennessee, Georgia and eight other state host presidential primaries on March 6.

Mitt Romney and Ron Paul have not announced any local stops to this point.

For more information, see tomorrow's Times Free Press.