Rick Santorum has at long last got his Not-Mitt moment. He is surging in the polls and he’s launched a new ad that avoids the meanness that characterized the Gingrich ads from the last few months.

The ad successfully uses humor to skewer Mitt Romney’s negative attack machine that he’s successfully used against every opponent — something that has been common with Mitt’s campaigns since all the way back to the 1990s.

Rasmussen shows him up three points over Romney in Michigan. The poll finds Santorum at 35%, Romney at 32%, and Gingrich way down at 11% — Even Ron Paul polls at 13% in Michigan showing that Gingrich really has cratered from his earlier Non-Mitt highs.

This is interesting if true because Michigan is supposed to be Romney’s stronghold. After all, his father was a one-time Governor of the Wolverine State and Mitt has long-held ties to the state.

Rick is up in Ohio, too. According to Quinnipiac, Santorum stands at 36%W to Romney’s 29%. Ohio is an extremely important battleground state.

Nationally, Rassmussen also finds Santorum capping Romney. Its latest poll shows Santorum at 39% to Romney’s 27% (with Gingrich at 15% and Paul at 10%).

I have to say, if you are to ask me to pick between Romney (a liberal who is a sudden conservative in order to win election) and Santorum (granted a guy that does see some use for big government), I have to pick Santorum. At least Santorum has a long conservative track record despite his various problem votes and policy ideas. Romney is a liberal whose record only reaches towards moderate ideals.

Romney’s claims that he is Mr. Conservative do not reckon with his center-left record as Governor of Massachusetts. It really is just that simple.

So, Rick has gotten his Non-Mitt moment. Let’s see what he does with it.