Rick Santorum will not be the GOP presidential nominee, Jimmy LaSalvia and Chris Barron, founders of gay GOP group GOProud, have said.

“Rick Santorum is not going to be the nominee of this party. I know that the mainstream media and some in the party want to continue the charade that there is a horse race going on here. Rick Santorum is not even on the ballot in some [states,]” Barron said when CNN Early Start co-host Ashleigh Banfield raised the issue of how the men could support anti-gay GOP candidates.

Banfield noted that Santorum has won three states with “huge numbers.”

“John McCain lost 19 states – 17 of those after he won in South Carolina and Florida – and his nomination was never in question. The bottom line is that the only candidate who has a national organization that can win this primary is Mitt Romney. I mean, we can continue to pretend that there's a horse race and I know that the media wants to pretend like there's a horse race.”

Early in the nominating contest, LaSalvia and Barron said their group could support any of the GOP candidates, including Santorum and Michele Bachmann, whose campaigns mainly focused on social issues.

“The reality is, we're all living in this Obama economy,” LaSalvia said on the show. “Gay people are living in the Obama economy, too. And we've got to come together. Gay and straight, liberal and conservative, and fire the president.” (Watch the exchange at CNN.com)