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Monday, January 15, 2007

McCain-Pawlenty Redux

Governor Pawlenty announced on Bill Bennett's radio program this morning that he is co-chairing the McCain for President exploratory committee. When asked by Bennett who the other co-chair is Pawlenty said that he had not yet been informed.

The Governor took some heat from a conservative caller questioning some of the positions McCain has taken as well as his own drift to the left to get long with the Democrats. Pawlenty responded with his rapidly becoming stock answer that there is no such thing as a perfect candidate, and one has to balance idealogical purity with electability and the candidates actions taken as a whole.

Bennett pointed out that while he likes and respects McCain on the whole, McCain has some serious problems with the conservative base. As one of the leaders of the "Gang of 14" he was responsible for keeping the Senate from setting the precedent of not allowing filibustering the confirmation of judges which may have a very negative impact if President Bush gets to nominate another Supreme Court justice. His teaming up with the extreme liberal Senator Russ Feingold on the McCain-Feingold Campaign Finance Reform legislation resulted in a serious weakening of the first amendment. McCain has also been wishy-washy on immigration and has some dangerous views on gun rights. Many conservatives consider his "overalls" a significant contributer to the election disaster of last fall.

This is something to keep an eye on. The Governor has enough problems, both from the Democrats and those of his own making. Taking on this additional duty will undoubtedly consume some of his attention and may color the way he governs, especially if it turns out that the Gov's ultimate goal is the VP nomination as several observers have suspected.


Blogger John Galt said...

Why would Pawlenty want to be Veep anyway? It's almost always a dead end. Maybe it's an indicator of his beliefs about his own capabilities.

1/17/2007 3:06 PM  
Blogger Right Hook said...

The VP is often a dead end for already entrenched Washington politicians, but for a young guy like Pawlenty it would be a fast way to become a player in the DC cocktail party circuit. It's clear he wants to go to Washington (he would have run against Wellstoned had Cheney not intervened and pushed for Coleman).

I don't think you need to worry about the Gov having a low self-opinion of his capabilities. The bigger worry is whether or not his self-assessment reflects reality.

1/18/2007 12:31 PM  

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