Exclusive* interview with Gov. Tim Pawlenty

posted at 2:41 pm on July 23, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Earlier today, I had an opportunity to speak with Governor Tim Pawlenty, who spoke with me about his own record as Minnesota’s chief executive, the need to elect Mitt Romney in November, and give a description of what Romney should look for in a running mate.  Of course, Pawlenty has drawn a lot speculation about his own chances to join the ticket, but he reminds me that he was “on the short list” four years ago, too.  For now, he’s happy to make appearances and campaign for Romney as a volunteer.  “I think I can help him best in other ways,” Pawlenty told me, “but obviously, anybody would be honored to be asked to consider serving in such a position.”

We spoke about the economy as well, in a couple of different contexts.  “This is going to be an election about the future direction of America,” Pawlenty said early in the interview, adding later that the difference is “government versus free enterprise.”  Pawlenty didn’t bring up Obama’s “you didn’t build that” comment, but Pawlentye clearly rejects that approach.  As the new report that poverty will probably rise to its highest level in decades demonstrates, “the economy continues to sputter,” Pawlenty said.  “The recovery, if there is one, is tepid and anemic.”  The economy simply hasn’t produced the jobs that keeps people from falling into poverty.  “We have the lowest rate of business formation in 30 years,” Pawlenty said, “and that and more adds up to a picture of economic challenge and despair.”

Bottom line? “[Obama's] rhetoric, his speeches, don’t pay people’s grocery bills, don’t put gas in the car, they don’t pay the mortgage, they don’t pay for health insurance,” Pawlenty concludes.  “You’ve got to actually have results, and in this regard, he’s failed.”  Indeed, and that’s why Team Obama is reaching for every distraction they can possibly find to keep the election from being a referendum on Obamanomics.  Pawlenty remains solidly on topic, and that’s good news for Mitt Romney.

Addendum: Pawlenty’s website now only has a cryptic message of “Please come back later,” but don’t read anything into that.  The site had been funded first by Pawlenty’s PAC, and then his presidential campaign.  A source on the latter tells me that when the campaign officially closed, so did the funding for the site, and a staffer put the message up.  The message may be changed to something more appropriate just to avoid unnecessary speculation, but there are no more plans for the site at this time.

* – Using the media definition of “exclusive,” which means no one else was on the call at the time.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

“[Obama's] rhetoric, his speeches, don’t pay people’s grocery bills, don’t put gas in the car

Neither do gasohol mandates.

MNHawk on July 23, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Snore.

Dante on July 23, 2012 at 2:45 PM

Well, can’t work up much enthusiasm over Pawlenty.

davidk on July 23, 2012 at 2:48 PM

Pawlenty is a master ventriloquist! Doesn”t change expression either!

joepub on July 23, 2012 at 2:49 PM

You want to shake up the race…select Liz Cheney, watch the liberal heads explode…

right2bright on July 23, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Why can’t Pawlenty just fade away?

http://tinyurl.com/d8pcgk3

SWalker on July 23, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Earlier today, I had an opportunity to speak with Governor Tim Pawlenty,

And you couldn’t get out of it?

rrpjr on July 23, 2012 at 2:51 PM

So, for example, what would this lame little RINO say or do about the evil Mexican slave trade going on down on our Mexican border.

Holmes 12

U.S.A. wage/vote slave lust 14

http://www.click2houston.com/

14 killed near Goliad Tex.
23 illegals cramed into a pickup/pickup bed. Some children.

Some one is guilty. Some will be found guilty. Many know of the guilt. Few act.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on July 23, 2012 at 2:52 PM

sorry to hijack this thread, but, why is not there any libor scandal threads in hot air?

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

“This is going to be an election about the future direction of America,”

Amazing man that Pawlenty, this may have been the first time a potential, let alone a candidate, has ever made that point.
The rest was more of the same blah, blah, blah…can’t they think for themselves.
However, he does make Mitt sound exciting…

right2bright on July 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

Pawlenty bashing is repugnant. He’s a solid conservative, a solid team member. He also had the most free market economic and tax proposals of any in the primary.

aquaviva on July 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

sorry to hijack this thread, but, why is not there any libor scandal threads in hot air?

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

i have my digital pitchfork ready!!!!

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Just because Pawlenty is AVAILABLE to be interviewed, does not mean that he SHOULD BE interviewed.

Pork-Chop on July 23, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Did you put half ping-pong balls over your eyes to look as if you were awake during the interview?

Just kidding, Tpaw is a good man and he isn’t as freakishly anonymous as Howard Jack John Gary Johnson.

Bishop on July 23, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Walker, Rubio or Jindal please! If it isn’t one of those 3, the Romney campaign is playing to lose.

milemarker2020 on July 23, 2012 at 2:58 PM

Good interview, Ed.

changer1701 on July 23, 2012 at 3:00 PM

I’d like to see someone who will be a good attack dog for Ronmey. Not sure who that is, but, somehow, I’m having a hard time seeing Pawlenty in that role.

I’d always be afraid he’d start talking about what’s on his iPod again.

Curtiss on July 23, 2012 at 3:01 PM

If T.Paw can’t deliver MN (yeah, maybe it’s in play), what can he deliver?

Cody1991 on July 23, 2012 at 3:03 PM

A source on the latter tells me that when the campaign officially closed, so did the funding for the site, and a staffer put the message up.

So, when did the campaign “officially close?” How long has the message been up? etc.

Not that I really need all those answers- but I hope your “source” is better than whoever you were relying on for the 7/19 post about Palin, convention, etc…

Gotta say, Ed, HA came off looking a bit silly…

cs89 on July 23, 2012 at 3:03 PM

Does anybody really believe Pawlenty would even be considered if half his staff hadn’t jumped over to Romney’s campaign? They are no doubt pushing him day and night….sort of like Ed.
Believe me, I’m not for choosing Perry, but he’s a three terms governor of the most successful state in the union and isn’t even mentioned, yet a mileage taxing, moderate like Pawlenty is?
Neither Pawlenty or Portman should even be considered. If you want a moderate who would insure victory pick Rice. If you want a conservative pick Rubio, Jindal or Ryan. End of story.

AmeriCuda on July 23, 2012 at 3:04 PM

sorry to hijack this thread, but, why is not there any libor scandal threads in hot air?

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

i have my digital pitchfork ready!!!!

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 2:54 PM

sorry to insist, but i searched hot air and i could not find a single reference to this scandal?!?!

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 3:07 PM

You want to shake up the race…select Liz Cheney, watch the liberal heads explode…

right2bright on July 23, 2012 at 2:50 PM

The entertainment level of watching the left react would be solid gold. But I’d rather see her as AG.

predator on July 23, 2012 at 3:08 PM

Just kidding, Tpaw is a good man and he isn’t as freakishly anonymous as Howard Jack John Gary Johnson.

Bishop on July 23, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Howard Jack John Gary Johnson!

Hey, say his name 3 times fast, and his polls go up .0005%

Johnszzzz 2012: Ya gotta sleep sometime!

BlaxPac on July 23, 2012 at 3:10 PM

sorry to insist, but i searched hot air and i could not find a single reference to this scandal?!?!

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 3:07 PM

MKH mentioned on Ed’s show that she was working on a Libor piece. Haven’t seen it yet.

Cody1991 on July 23, 2012 at 3:10 PM

I’m amazed Ed managed to stay awake during the entire interview.

lorien1973 on July 23, 2012 at 3:17 PM

MKH mentioned on Ed’s show that she was working on a Libor piece. Haven’t seen it yet.

Cody1991 on July 23, 2012 at 3:10 PM

if this was any good for the GOP, the partisan minions on this blog would have plastered in several threads…
but I am perplexed, since this does not finger any repub in concrete. whats up?

nathor on July 23, 2012 at 3:19 PM

ho-hum to mittens, pawlenty, portman, etc.
Remember this:
America needs conservatives in charge for a change!

Pragmatic on July 23, 2012 at 3:19 PM

Is this the guy who comes from a family of Meat Packers??

ToddPA on July 23, 2012 at 3:34 PM

So a thread with a picture of pawlenty garners…
..WOW! 20 posts.

A thread with Sarah Palin garners….

..enough posts to pay the salaries of HotAir employees for
the next 3 months..

Hmmmm.

ToddPA on July 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Romney / PALIN (or) WEST 2012!

Pork-Chop on July 23, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Pawlenty bashing is repugnant. He’s a solid conservative, a solid team member. He also had the most free market economic and tax proposals of any in the primary.

aquaviva on July 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

Raising the gasohol mandate from 10% to 15%?

Applying a special tax to cigarette companies that were NOT found to have broken the law?

Passing the buck on reigning in spending increases, so as to not leave Minnesota with a structural deficit?

A special sales tax so as to funnel money straight to the ownership of the Minnesota Twins?

I’m not feeling that free market thrill going down my leg at this record.

MNHawk on July 23, 2012 at 3:44 PM

Romney / PALIN (or) WEST 2012!

Pork-Chop on July 23, 2012 at 3:43 PM

I hear ya. Of course my ULTIMATE TICKET..

PALIN/PALIN HALIBUT CLUB 2012

ToddPA on July 23, 2012 at 3:46 PM

Howard Jack John Gary Johnson.

Bishop on July 23, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Who is free market. Tim Pawlenty is not, by any definition.

MNHawk on July 23, 2012 at 3:49 PM

So a thread with a picture of pawlenty garners…
..WOW! 20 posts.

ToddPA on July 23, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Palin supporter here, I’ll give him another post and up twinkles for saying this:

“The truth about federal energy subsidies, including federal subsidies for ethanol, is that they have to be phased out,” declared Pawlenty. “We simply can’t afford them anymore.”

You should see the burned out cornfields in Illinois, Missouri and Iowa this summer. We simply cannot afford to keep subsidizing corn to use in gasoline. As for VP? Um… no thanks.

Fallon on July 23, 2012 at 3:54 PM

He maybe nice but is sooo boring! Seriously! Still like Gov. Susanna Martinez but if you are going the boring route at least go for Portman from Ohio and speaks Spanish and has foreign policy experience.

Mangofish26 on July 23, 2012 at 4:02 PM

“The truth about federal energy subsidies, including federal subsidies for ethanol, is that they have to be phased out,” declared Pawlenty. “We simply can’t afford them anymore.”

You should see the burned out cornfields in Illinois, Missouri and Iowa this summer. We simply cannot afford to keep subsidizing corn to use in gasoline. As for VP? Um… no thanks.

Fallon on July 23, 2012 at 3:54 PM

That plays well in a sound bite for Republicans, but…

Pawlenty signed legislation mandating that all gas sold in Minnesota contain 20 percent ethanol by 2013, up from 10 percent…. In 2005, Pawlenty also urged other states, at a meeting of the Governors’ Ethanol Coalition (which had 31 member states at the time), to mandate that all gasoline contain 10 percent ethanol by 2010.

sharrukin on July 23, 2012 at 4:03 PM

Why on this Earth would you pick the first person tossed out of the primary race? He has ZERO APPEAL and probably can’t carry his own state.

HopeHeFails on July 23, 2012 at 4:07 PM

sharrukin on July 23, 2012 at 4:03 PM

I didn’t mean to be coy. I gave him up twinkles for saying it but linked at the word ethanol to Pawlenty: I was for Ethanol Subsidies Before I was Against Them

Fallon on July 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

…I like him!…but not right now!

KOOLAID2 on July 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

Pawlenty: I was for Ethanol Subsidies Before I was Against Them

Fallon on July 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

Heh. Shades of John Kerry.

That is certainly an argument in favor of Pawlenty being a perfect fit for Romney.

sharrukin on July 23, 2012 at 4:15 PM

ED

Full court press on the TPaw for VP.

Give up buddy, it going to be Paul Ryan.

Romney/Ryan 2012

Sparty on July 23, 2012 at 4:16 PM

Why on this Earth would you pick the first person tossed out of the primary race? He has ZERO APPEAL and probably can’t carry his own state.

HopeHeFails on July 23, 2012 at 4:07 PM

Because he had to find the one guy who could make Romney look exciting and less vanilla.

Dante on July 23, 2012 at 4:21 PM

Wow Timmy Pawlenty! How exczzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

46 comments or bust! *yawn*

Valkyriepundit on July 23, 2012 at 4:34 PM

You want to shake up the race…select Liz Cheney, watch the liberal heads explode…

right2bright on July 23, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Remind me, again… exactly how many times has Liz Cheney successfully campaigned for public office?

JohnGalt23 on July 23, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Remind me, again… exactly how many times has Liz Cheney successfully campaigned for public office?

JohnGalt23 on July 23, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Unlike that political juggernaut Mitt Romney who has won…once?

sharrukin on July 23, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Exclusive* interview with Gov. Tim Pawlenty
…so tell us, Morrissey, what did you do to stay AWAKE during that !!!! (If he is Romney’s VP – all of America will eventually need to know.)

TeaPartyNation on July 23, 2012 at 5:46 PM

You want to shake up the race…select Liz Cheney, watch the liberal heads explode…

right2bright on July 23, 2012 at 2:50 PM

heh

Hope Romney finds a dark horse and not a plug

Romney / PALIN (or) WEST 2012!

Pork-Chop on July 23, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Palin was so far out she is in again. She would be an audience magnet if she can contain her family before the tabloids finish redefining them down

The Club figures her for road kill so they have moved on

I hate the way the Club moves to destroy the ones they fear and loathe, like Bachman. McCain ran like a little demon to set up Bachman. He ran so fast, I feared he might drop his script

MNHawk on July 23, 2012 at 3:44 PM

Pawlenty has been dropped on the base so many times it makes you wonder why they think he will eventually stick. There is a difference between morphing and molting, although the Club thinks no one notices

entagor on July 23, 2012 at 7:16 PM

Every time I see Pawlenty he reminds me of Stevie in “Eastbound and Down.”

mpk on July 23, 2012 at 7:16 PM

Oh, FFS – does “T Paw” own part of Townhall/Hot Air or something? Is there a more boring, yawn-inspiring candidate out there? /rhetorical question

Seriously – why does HA insist on flogging TP at us incessantly? Does this guy inspire *anyone* with any amount of enthusiasm?

Midas on July 23, 2012 at 10:11 PM