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Rick Santorum's Mascot Is SpongeBob Squarepants???

This drawing -- with the motto "Sponges for Santorum" -- looms over the war room at Rick Santorum's Bedford, New Hampshire headquarters, where a crowd gathered tonight to watch the Iowa caucus results. But isn't SpongeBob gay?

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SpongeBob SquarePants makes an unlikely associate for a candidate who has clashed more sharply with the gay rights movement than any other national politician. That's because SpongeBob was the target of of a 2005 criticism from Focus on the Family Founder James Dobson, who attacked the show's creators for filming a "pro-homosexual video" intended to promote tolerance and diversity. Rumors about the character's sexuality have persisted ever since.

Santorum recently said he "would invalidate" gay marriages if elected president, and once compared gay male sex to "man on dog" sex.

BuzzFeed asked Santorum's New Hampshire consultant, Bill Cahill, what the candidate would think of the Sponges for Santorum.

"I don't know," he laughed. "Call him and ask him, he'll be here tomorrow."

In fact, he said, drawing is an homage to the children of Santorum campaign manager Mike Biundo, who are fans of the cartoon sponge.

Rosie Gray is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, D.C. Gray reports on politics and foreign policy.

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