Santorum to campaign in Wash. on Monday

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OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is bringing his campaign to Washington next week.

State GOP spokesman Josh Amato says Santorum will hold a public event Monday evening. Senate Republican spokeswoman Rebecca Japhet says Santorum also plans to meet with Legislative leaders in Olympia in the afternoon.

The stops will make the first major presidential campaign gathering in Washington this year. The state's caucuses on March 3 will begin the process of assigning the state's 43 delegates.

Santorum's visit will coincide with Gov. Chris Gregoire's plan to sign the state's gay marriage bill into law. The Pennsylvania senator has built strength in the Republican campaign in part based on his conservative stance on social issues, including opposition to gay marriage.

Maine, Arizona and Michigan are first on the nominating calendar before Washington's caucuses.