Why Pawlenty would NOT be the best pick for VP
posted at 8:21 pm on August 2, 2012 by Mike Rathbone
I have to express my disagreement with Karl on the strengths of Pawlenty as a VP candidate. I’m sure Governor Pawlenty is a good and decent man and I have no real problem with boring candidates as long as they had a certain gravitas behind them (that is why on that front I think Portman would be a superior VP pick). Pawlenty, in my humble opinion, lacks that. Even before the primaries began he always came off to me as kind of a lightweight. His confrontation with Mitt during the primaries regarding “Obamneycare” just confirmed that. I’m sure Governor Pawlenty will continue to make an effective surrogate, but as a Vice Presidential candidate, I’m just not sold.
Neither am I sold on Governor Pawlenty’s ability to bring in some new group of voters (in this case blue collar types that might be wary of a stiff millionaire like Romney). He didn’t really strike a cord in the primaries and I’m doubtful he’ll bring in many new people that already weren’t going to vote for Romney anyway. I think there are two target demographics for us in the election with whom we need to do better. 1.) Middle class and upper-middle class suburban women. 2.) Latinos. We don’t necessarily have to win these groups, but we need to improve. Now, I don’t know if there is a candidate we have currently that can help the ticket do better with these groups and meet Governor Romney’s criteria as being ready on day one (sorry Rubio, Ayotte, and Martinez fans), but I am pretty certain that Pawlenty won’t help with these groups.
Karl states that he wants to keep the focus on President Obama and the economy, but do we really think the media will play this game? They’re trying everything under the sun to to change the subject, picking Pawlenty won’t stop that. If that’s a reason to pick Pawlenty, I think it is a pretty weak one.
No, it’ll be Mediscare, class warfare, and who knows what else in the fall. What would a Governor Pawlenty do in regards to fighting back against the Dems, except recite prepackaged talking points? That”s what he has been good at doing, but we can (and need to) do better than that. A Paul Ryan can do better than that and I also believe Bobby Jindal (whom I prefer to be picked) can.
I don’t dislike Tim Pawlenty. I just think Romney can do better. The Governor needs to stop being afraid of losing and just pick the best person for the job that won’t sink the ticket (people worrying about exorcist stories hurting the ticket in the case of Jindal, I think, are overestimating the importance that people place on that as an issue). Paul Ryan is such a person, Bobby Jindal is such a person, Jon Kyl is such a person. Governor Romney doesn’t have to make a “game-changing” pick, but he shouldn’t be afraid to pick the person he truly wants as a governing partner either.