Video: Pawlenty gets serious

Tim Pawlenty will announce his official entry into the Republican nomination sweepstakes later today at a rally in Iowa, but he’s also making a statement with his latest video. Instead of the quick-cut, high-energy videos that his team has produced in the past, Pawlenty takes a more serious tone in this spot, and that’s no accident. The message here is that it’s time to get serious and face the truth about the fiscal abyss we face, and the man Republicans hope to replace in 2012 just isn’t up to that task — nor is his even attempting to be:

We need a President who understands that our problems are deep, and who has the courage to face them. President Obama doesn’t. I do.

It doesn’t get more blunt than that. Later today, I’ll interview Pawlenty about his new campaign, and his intention to tell some truths to the GOP establishment as well.

Update: According to his op-ed in today’s USA Today, he’s apparently going to tell some hard truths in Iowa about … farm subsidies?

That’s why later this week I’m going to New York City to tell Wall Street that if I’m elected, the era of bailouts and handouts for big banks is over. I’m going to Florida to tell both young people and seniors that our entitlement programs are on an unsustainable path and have to be changed. And, today, I’m in Iowa to speak truthfully about farm subsidies.

Conventional political wisdom says that it’s better to tell people what they want to hear, rather than what they need to hear. But conventional political wisdom is what got us into this fiscal mess in the first place. Anyone who can’t tell hard truths now won’t be able to lead our country in the future. We now know that President’s Obama’s promise of “hope and change” was just hopeless hype.

If Pawlenty goes to Iowa to oppose farm subsidies, that’s about as honest as a Midwestern politician can get.  Will Iowans support that kind of long-overdue honesty, or will they punish Pawlenty for it?