Saturday, August 23, 2008

Will Biden Choice Push McCain Further Towards Pawlenty?

I got the text message this morning. Yes, Barack Obama sent me a text to tell me that he had chosen Joe Biden to run as his Vice Presidential Candidate.

So Obama/Biden will likely pick up Delaware. (Relax, Delaware, I'm just playing)

There is going to be a lot of armchair analysis over the next 24 hours about what this does for the race and what this does for McCain and his Vice Presidential choice. So I'll provide mine as well.

I think the choice of Biden makes it considerably more likely that Governor Pawlenty will be Senator McCain's choice.

I'm going to set aside for a moment that Biden has said Obama isn't ready, and the Biden HAS said the country would be better off with McCain. (Those two items being reasons why Obama might not have made a smart move here since both of those two statements will be repeated ad naseum). Everyone knows that Governor Pawlenty has been a steadfast, loyal McCain supporter, and that makes it much easier for him to campaign aggressively (because he believes in the campaign and Biden simply doesn't).

The choice of Biden makes Pawlenty the obvious choice because the contrast between the two at this point in history gives Governor Pawlenty every advantage in the world.

I'm sure Democrats will say Biden has more foreign policy experience than the Governor. Who cares? Seriously. I'm going to take this inept argument off the table right now. Governor Pawlenty, if chosen, will be running with Senator John McCain. Senator John McCain will obviously lead the team on all things foreign policy, and even with Biden's level of experience, Senator McCain has more credibility and knowledge on foreign policy issues than Biden and Obama combined.

This election is going to be about Jobs and Energy, and there are few in the country as prepared to talk about hope, the future, and better yet actual results on these issues as Governor Pawlenty.

I've written it before, but Governors across the country are watching to see what Governor Pawlenty does on Energy, and are following his lead. Governor Pawlenty recognizing a balanced approach of domestic exploration, Americanization of energy, along with Conservation and renewables is the only path towards the kind of energy policy that is critical right now.

And Governor Pawlenty, with his veto pen, has been THE leader fighting pork and wasteful spending. His veto pen compliments McCain's crusade over the years against earmarks and pork. This would be an amazing team on the issue of jobs and the economy. Governor Pawlenty ensures the GOP ticket will be able to walk all over this Obama/Biden ticket on issues of jobs and the economy.

Lastly, for those of you who don't know Governor Pawlenty, he is one of the most genuine, down-to-earth, normal people you could ever know. He grew up in a family with deep, deep blue collar roots and became governor of the state of Minnesota the old fashion way, he worked for it.
Biden is commonly known to be one of the more elitist and most arrogant members of the Senate.

When the two of them stand together in a Vice Presidential Debate, the contrast will not be more stark.

What a great opportunity for McCain.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Does VP T-Paw Put McCain Over the Top? (2.0)

By all accounts, this presidential race appears to be heading towards a razer thin margin of victory, with the victor being totally up in the air.

Today, Barak Obama announced that he has made his decision on who he will choose as his Vice Presidential Runningmate.

So with Senator McCain making this race a virtual tie, how does he capitalize on this clear momentum and put himself over the top come November?

One clear way is to choose a runningmate of his own who will bring him a swing state (and better yet the swing region of Minnewisowa)

New polls and non-partisan analysis once again show that choosing Governor Pawlenty could put Senator McCain over the top in Minnesota, a state that hasn't voted Republican for President since 1972.

A Republican presidential candidate hasn't won in Minnesota since 1972. But Jacobs said the poll found McCain might be able to reverse that trend, if he selects Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty as his vice presidential running mate. One in four of the undecided voters and initial-Obama supporters said they'd back a McCain-Pawlenty ticket.

"We were quite impressed by the impact that Gov. Pawlenty has on McCain's chances," he said. "Our analysis suggests that the McCain ticket jumps by 13 points by adding Gov. Pawlenty to the ticket. That is quite an impact." (emphasis ours), excerpted from article, click here to read the article in its entirety.

Thirteen points is a dramatic jump.

Perhaps McCain gets 13 points because Governor Pawlenty delivers on all of the issues that rise to the top of well publicized public opinion polls.

Jobs -- Governor Pawlenty is the quintessential "Sam's Club Republican." He knows Republican ideas and republican values work because they defined his life and his deep blue collar roots.

Energy -- Governors from both parties look to Governor Pawlenty for guidance and leadership on the development of a balanced, domestic energy plan. The left has an approach, the right has an approach, and the country is crying out for a balanced approach; Governor Pawlenty's approach.

Taxes -- Governor Pawlenty solved the largest per capita deficit in the country without raising taxes. In Washington, as in Minnesota, Government doesn't have a revenue problem, it has a spending problem. Republicans and Democrats alike in Washington have an appetite for pork that has grown exponentially over the past few years. During those same years, Governor Pawlenty set records in Minnesota for vetoes (setting aside entirely the wasteful spending that didn't even make it close to his office out of fear of a veto).

The bottom line is that the issues of the day are the issues of Pawlenty.

To marry that with a critical geographic advantage for Senator McCain with Governor Pawlenty at his side makes it more and more likely that we will see Governor Pawlenty in Ohio for Senator McCain's Birthday.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Pawlenty Rocks National Press Club

Governor Pawlenty spoke earlier today at the National Press Club, and clearly displayed for the nation why he is the future (and in many ways the here and now) of the Republican Party.

Pawlenty, seen by many as one of the top contenders to be Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) presidential running mate, said the Sam’s Club Republican represents a present-day analogue to the Reagan Democrat.

“Sam’s Club Republicans feel like they’ve been disenfranchised,” he said.

When asked what the Bush administration had done wrong, Pawlenty stressed that the party had gotten away from a focus on ideas, like the Contract with America.

“ 'Compassionate conservatism’ has to be about more than a label,” he said. “The idea factory has been less robust than it should have been.”

Specifically, Pawlenty emphasized a new approach to education. He said it is a “near-scandal” that higher education isn’t properly preparing students to be teachers, and he advocated online courses as the cost- and time-efficient education of the future. (Excerpt from article)

The biggest criticism of Governor Pawlenty's speech has been that Governor Pawlenty was complimentary about Obama's optimistic tone.

Which goes to the very point of this whole discussion about Governor Pawlenty, his vision, demeanor and leadership style, and exactly why the Grand Old Party has morphed so dramatically into the Party of Pawlenty.

Governor Pawlenty frequently talks about the "Sam's Club Republicans;" those disaffected blue collar, working class voters who share the values of the Republican Party (faith, family, freedom and the like) but have seen a GOP painted as the "Country Club Party."

I won't dwell on the glaringly obvious (that the Liberal Elite who make up the brunt of the Democratic Party are exactly who one would expect to see at the stereotypical Country Club, and exactly the type who wouldn't dare show themselves at a Sam's Club).

In a high-energy performance before the National Press Club in Washington today (Aug. 6), Gov. Tim Pawlenty humorously ducked The Question — his vice presidential ambitions — but otherwise spoke on Sam’s Club Republicans, a perceived thinness in Barack Obama, and numerous national issues.


Republicans needed to do better in appealing to the young voters— the party needs a message and messengers, he said.

He spoke of a belated party focus on the environment, conservation and energy but one that’s emerging.

Republican leaders also need to show interest in international compassion — another focus of the young, Pawlenty opined.

But Pawlenty warned that the evangelical vote is one that Republicans should continue to seek. “It’s not a vote to be taken for granted,” he said.

Although the Associated Press in a story indicted that Pawlenty had offered positive comments about Obama — that people gravitate toward positive leaders — before the press club Pawlenty said he had mentioned McCain in the same sentence.

Pawlenty contrasted McCain and Obama by saying the former had a real life story while the latter had oratory.

“Not even a close call in my book,” Pawlenty said of the perceived difference. (Excerpted from article, click here to read article in its entirety)

If this was an audition, a call back is inevitable.

I think this was more likely the show, and we'll see encore after encore after encore from Governor Pawlenty.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Huckabee for Pawlenty

Former Governor of Arkansas and recent Presidential Candidate Mike Huckabee declared on Fox News Channel's Hannity and Colmes last night that if he had to pick Senator McCain's running make, "I'd go Pawlenty"

For someone who himself has consistently been rumored to be on the short list to say he thinks McCain should pick Governor Pawlenty is pretty incredible.

Monday, July 28, 2008

National Review: McCain to Pick Pawlenty

"A source tells me that Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty is John McCain's choice, and that the announcement is coming very soon. But I checked with the American Legislative Exchange Council, who Pawlenty is scheduled to address Wednesday at 11:30. As far as they know, his speech is still on." Source: National Review Online, July 28, 2008

Click here for the complete post.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

New Quinnipiac Poll, Enhancing Pawlenty VP Buzz?

Is a new Quinnipiac Poll an indication of all of the Pawlenty VP Buzz?

If you live in Minnesota, you can't pick up a paper or turn on the radio and not hear about Governor Pawlenty being at the top of the top of Senator McCain's short list for VP.

A few weeks back we posted on some polling showing that Governor Pawlenty was best positioned to help McCain pick up Minnesota, a feat that hasn't been accomplished by a GOP Presidential Candidate since 1972.

Indulge me for a moment.

Let's set aside the following as givens:

  • Governor Pawlenty is a young, vibrant new voice for the GOP
  • Governor Pawlenty will excite and energize the Christian Conservative base.
  • Governor Pawlenty has reshaped Minnesota with fiscal restraint and the most taxpayer friendly administration in the history of Minnesota.
  • Governor Pawlenty with his "Sam's Club Republican" vision and his deep blue collar roots has an uncanny ability to talk to disaffected voters.
  • Governor Pawlenty has been a loyal McCain supporter during the most difficult times of the campaign.
  • Governor Pawlenty is an Outside-the-Beltway Reform minded Governor who would compliment Sen. McCain's "stand strong against the beltway, reform minded" senate Record.
  • Mary Pawlenty is awesome!

Let's set those aside as given, because they are.

With all of the growing buzz surrounding Governor Pawlenty, let's take a look at raw numbers.

Today, a Quinnipiac Poll was released that shows a dramatic closing of the gap between Obama and McCain. In fact, McCain is only down two points in Minnesota, and the polling continues to move in the right direction here and in surrounding states.

Everyone knows that Governor Pawlenty will be able to walk into states like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Ohio and look voters in the eye to talk about economics, jobs, health care and all of the pocket book issues that the GOP needs to win back in order to be successful this election.

Adding that to the increasing evidence that Senator McCain will have a legitimate shot at Minnesota (probably more likely than not now) with Pawlenty on the ticket, and it is no wonder Governor Pawlenty is the likely choice.

If Governor Pawlenty can bring to McCain more electoral votes, and a more personal story to disaffected blue collar voters and Christian Conservatives, the fact that he has been a loyal McCain supporter throughout will just be icing on the cake.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Pawlenty's "Very Big Place"

Senator John McCain said the other day, "I believe that Governor Pawlenty is the next and new generation of leadership in Republican Party and America. . . "

We happen to agree. We even created a blog, this blog, to that effect to track the successes of our Great Governor, and his vision for the future of not just the GOP, but the State of Minnesota, and ultimately the future of the country.

And the more we read, the more we watch and monitor, the more clear it becomes just how instrumental Governor Pawlenty will be in in this future, and just how clearly he fits as the brand of the 21st Century Republican Party.

It is human nature to ask what this means for the "here and now" during the heat of a presidential race, and what it means for the "here and now" is clear:

Governor Pawlenty is the obvious and clear best choice to be the next Vice- President of the United States should Senator John McCain win this November.

Up From His Bootstraps

In a party long seen as controlled by affluent elites, Pawlenty's decidedly blue collar background puts an entirely different face on what it means to be a Republican.

Tim Pawlenty and John McCain
McCain, left, on stage in Mankato, Minn., with Tim Pawlenty, center, during the latter's 2006 campaign for reelection. (AP File Photo)

Pawlenty grew up in the working class environs of South St. Paul. He was a teenager when he lost his mother. His father was a truck driver. He was the first member of his family to graduate from college. He still plays ice hockey whenever he can. He caught a 17" walleye on opening day of fishing season this spring. His most oft-quoted line by the national press is his vow to make the GOP the party of "Sam's Club not just the country club."

That "regular guy" profile appeals to a party that finds itself increasingly ceding the middle class vote to Democrats -- an untenable position if Republicans hope to retain the White House this year or take back control of the House and Senate anytime soon.

"To me, he epitomizes where the party needs to go in terms of its communication," said former White House political director Sara Taylor. "He is focused on how these Washington policies effect real people."

. . . . .

Bridging the Evangelical Gap

VIDEO | PostTalk's Feb. interview with Minn. Gov. Tim Pawlenty. Watch Now.

It's no secret that evangelical Christian voters never really came around to McCain during the primary season. Any number of candidates made a pitch for their support, but it eventually coalesced behind former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee -- an evangelical in his own right. Even after it was abundantly clear that McCain would be the GOP nominee, evangelical voters stuck by Huckabee -- pushing him into the teens and even 20s in some states where he wasn't even running an active political operation.

The lack of intensity among one of the pillars of the Republican base should be concerning to all GOPers heading into the fall, especially given the huge amount of excitement Obama is generating among the Democratic base.

Pawlenty could well provide a solution to the gap between McCain and evangelical voters without alienating moderates and independents. (Huckabee would almost surely help McCain bridge the evangelical gap too but lacks the appeal to the ideological middle.) Vin Weber, a former Republican member of Congress from Minnesota and now a major player in Washington GOP politics, explains that while Pawlenty has close ties to the evangelical community in his state and nationally but is "not a guy who wears [religion] on his sleeve."

The connection to evangelicals is largely through Pawlenty's wife, Mary. She is a graduate of Bethel University in Minnesota, which describes itself as teaching a "distinctly evangelical Christian philosophy of education." Mary Pawlenty is also a longtime member of the Wooddale Church and is a close friend of the church's pastorLeith Anderson. (Make sure to check out this profile of Mary Pawlenty from Bethel's alumni magazine that was written in 2000.)

Anderson is a powerful force in the evangelical community, having served as the past and current president of the National Association of Evangelicals.

"If [Pawlenty] were chosen it would reverberate with the 30 million members of those churches almost instantaneously and very publicly," said Weber. (click here to read the article in its entirety)

And "The Fix" goes on to discuss his Boy Scout reputation, and the fact that he is decidedly "NOT WASHINGTON" at a time when virtually everyone, across the political spectrum is crying out for "not Washington."

But Governor Pawlenty's future as the face and leader of the Republican Party goes far beyond the here and now. Should Governor Pawlenty not be chosen as Senator McCain's running mate, his position as the new GOP wouldn't change at all.

As we've reported, Governor Pawlenty has set a record in Minnesota for his vetoes of pork barrel spending, and onerous tax hike schemes.

The GOP has, in many respect, lost its brand on the issue of spending leading up to, and during the exact time that Governor Pawlenty was balancing a record budget deficit in Minnesota without raising taxes, and while he was vetoing spending bills and tax increases to keep Minnesota and Minnesota's business climate competitive.

But he has maintained a strong, fiscally conservative, free-market record while still speaking through the prism of his deep blue collar roots. Lower taxes, less regulation, limited government and the like are necessarily, in my opinion, blue-collar, working class values. Yet the media tends to portray those values as the values of the rich (you know, the rich, like those "conservatives" George Soros, and the entirety of Hollywood.)

Governor Pawlenty's vision and the policies he has pushed have a populist appeal, but not the kind of faux-populism that comes from the pseudo-compassionate on the Left. He has lead with a real populism that comes with creating an environment where people from his neighborhood (and mine) really can succeed because of the liberties we enjoy.

And at the same time, Governor Pawlenty is able to lead as perhaps the "Perfect Evangelical" Republican Leader of our day.

In 2003, Pawlenty and Wooddale hosted about 1,600 evangelical leaders from around the country for a two-day convention of the National Association of Evangelicals. Pawlenty praised the work of President Bush and his faith-based initiatives, a program that funnels federal funds to religious charities. "If you're going to change destructive behavior, you've got to change hearts," said Pawlenty, according to the Star Tribune. "Governors can't do that. We hope you can do that in a God-honoring manner that meets the challenges of our day."

In 2004, the evangelical Twin Cities Festival drew around 80,000 people to the Minnesota Capitol grounds for a two-day faith event. Pawlenty offered a warm reception, and even held event-organizing meetings with Luis Palau, according to the Pioneer Press. Of the festival, Pawlenty said, "I'm proud to be associated with such an important faith event. Faith is an important glue that holds our state together." He added that he prayed "that God will bless this weekend and continue to bless this great state." Mary Pawlenty was a featured speaker at the festival.

Pawlenty has quietly but firmly put his evangelical beliefs to work in his political life as governor. In 2003, an inauguration ceremony was held at Wooddale just before his swearing in with Anderson saying a few words: "I believe the God of government has brought Tim Pawlenty to the governor's office in St. Paul for peace and good in the lives of all Minnesotans." He had a similar ceremony at Wooddale in January 2007 after winning reelection in 2006. (Click here to read article in its entirety)

So when Senator McCain tells audiences that Governor Pawlenty has a "very big place" in the future of the GOP and of the country (click here for audio) we know that the "very big place" he has is as one of, if not THE, key leaders, faces, and visionaries of our party for years to come.

Whether one is talking about faith, freedom, liberty, fiscal responsibility, blue-collar roots, loyalty, ethics or even raw electoral vote analysis, Governor Pawlenty, the package, is the best choice for Senator McCain leading into the remainder of this campaign cycle.

But without regard to his spot on this ticket, we are seeing more and more that there is agreement we have become the "Party of Pawlenty."

Friday, June 13, 2008

RIP Tim Russert

One of the few truly excellent journalists, "Meet the Press" host Tim Russert has passed away from an apparent heart attack.

He will be sorely missed.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Does VP T-Paw Put McCain Over the Top?

Minnesota, along with the Electoral Vote-rich MinneWisowa upper Midwest region, remain a key battle ground this presidential election cycle.

New polls just released indicate that Governor Pawlenty is best positioned, among the most often mentioned on the short list, to put McCain over the top in Minnesota. (Click here to read poll results)

And he is the ONLY potential VP tested who gets McCain outside of the margin of error in our state which has not gone Republican since 1972. This should raise eyebrows and get people excited throughout the McCain campaign structure. The election map this cycle is turning conventional wisdom on its head, and the prospect of McCain winning this region changes the dynamic even further.

There are a variety of reasons Pawlenty would make such a strong Vice-Presidential nominee aside from his ability to deliver this block of electoral votes. Many of these reasons shined through during the Governor's speech to the State Republican Convention last weekend in Rochester Minnesota.

Wearing his freshly risen national profile lightly, Gov. Tim Pawlenty strode onto the stage of the GOP state convention like the old friend you know who has suddenly become a superstar. In marked contrast to Friday's friction at the convention, Pawlenty offered weary delegates a message of hope and optimism on Saturday that carried echoes of a reverse-field Barack Obama.

"People need something future-leaning, forward, positive and hopeful," Pawlenty said. "That needs to be the tone and tenor of our party. ... People want to be part of something exciting, positive, meaningful."

The challenge, he said, will be in besting a party that can base its appeal on something for nothing.

"We have a higher burden because we're running against people giving away free stuff. You got a problem, we got a program. It's hard to compete against a competitor that gives away free stuff. You and I know it's not free." (Excerpted From Article)

Aside from being absolutely right on taxes, spending, communisms destructive nature, the size of government and a whole host of other reasons, Ronald Reagan was successful because people believed in him. He was an optimistic voice who articulated difficult issues in a positive, visionary tone. When Liberals offered "free stuff," Reagan reminded people that the "free stuff" is expensive, and more often than not makes the recipients of the "free stuff" un-free.

Governor Pawlenty has that quality, and his background and blue-collar roots give him a level of credibility on issues of the pocketbook and issues of the heart that the media tries to take away from most Conservatives.

We are in a place in history not all that unfamiliar. The Left in this country searches night and day to find a cloud in every silver lining. This is true whether we are discussing national security, the economy, or virtually any other important public policy issue of the day.

It is this eternal pessimism among the Left that allows Conservatives like Governor Pawlenty to break through the clutter and help ensure that the message of "free stuff" doesn't win the day.

So back to the polling.

Where people know Governor Pawlenty, they like him. Automatically.

It just so happens that one of the states in one of the regions that Senator McCain desperately needs to win, is a state in a region that already knows Governor Pawlenty.

And now the numbers show definitively that the electoral map shifts with Governor Pawlenty on the team.

Makes you wonder where else our Sam's Club Republican Governor might help McCain this November (Michigan? Ohio? Pennsylvania?). . .

Friday, May 30, 2008

One For the Record Books

Governor Pawlenty has long been known (as a legislator and now Governor) as a strong voice for fiscal restraint and a champion for the taxpayer.

Going into the 2008 legislative session, things looked bleak for the Taxpayer. A veto-proof liberal majority in the Senate, and a nearly veto-proof liberal majority in the House required particularly strong leadership by Minnesota's Chief Executive Officer.

Over the last few days, Governor Pawlenty has broken the record for Gubernatorial Vetoes in Minnesota, striking down intrusive and abusive regulations, and reckless spending.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty vetoed a heavily debated mortgage foreclosure bill on Thursday, officially closing the 2008 legislative session with more vetoes in one year than any other governor since before World War II.

As he completed action on bills sent to him by the DFL-controlled Legislature, the Republican governor issued his 32nd, 33rd and 34th vetoes -- easily breaking the previous record of 29 set by Gov. Arne Carlson in 1993.

Pawlenty's veto total was the highest since 1939, when modern-day records started to be kept, officials said. He also signed several bills Thursday.

"The checks and balances that are part of our system led to a record number of vetoes this year," said Pawlenty spokesman Brian McClung.

"The governor felt it was important to aggressively use his taxpayer protection pen to make sure government is held accountable and lives within its means," McClung added. (excerpted from article)

A couple of the items stricken by Governor Pawlenty in recent days deserve particular note, even though they may be obscure or esoteric.

First, the Governor vetoed a provision which would have been a massive bailout and obscuring of the free markets in the housing and mortgage sector. Laws permitted people to get into homes they otherwise wouldn't have been able to purchase IF the purchasers were willing to accept the risk of a ballooning interest rate if they weren't able to lock in.

One can be agnostic on the wisdom of allowing the risk averse to get into housing purchases that might be too. . . well. . . risky given their financial situation. But I think we can all agree that people going that route understood the risk (or clearly should have). Ronald Reagan once said Government isn't the solution, it is the problem (paraphrased). Much of the "housing crisis" is a result of silly Government Regulations, and as Governor Pawlenty wrote in his veto message, "If Minnesota creates a statutory right for individuals to remain in their homes beyond our already extensive foreclosure laws, mortgage providers will factor this additional business risk into mortgage agreements and Minnesota mortgages will be more expensive. This will negatively impact the credit market in Minnesota by increasing interest rates for Minnesotans who are trying to refinance or purchase a new home."

Our housing market in Minnesota is tenuous enough right now without the State of Minnesota making it all but impossible for people to purchase homes.

Second, the governor line-item vetoed $134,000 to implement the controversial "California Low Emissions Vehicle Standards" (CaLEV) which wasn't even adopted by the left-wing Legislature it was so controversial. Yet they still tried to fund it with our money. Thankfully Governor Pawlenty stopped this with the flick of his Bic.

For those of you who haven't followed this issue, our state actually considered turning over our vehicle emissions standards to an unelected California board known as the "California Air Resources Board" or CARB.

(You read that right. An unelected organization in the state of California would have been handed the right to decide how Minnesota's emissions standards evolve).

Some in the legislature were so excited to shirk their own duties as elected officials and hand over power to some faceless group who we can't even adequately appeal to, that despite the fact that a State Senate Committee said, "no-way," they almost funded the implementation anyway.

Thanks to Governor Pawlenty for standing strong against these silly regulations, and outrageous spending.

It is nice to see the Governor Pawlenty enter Minnesota's record books as the foremost advocate for the taxpayer by blocking these and other provisions.

Thanks Gov!

(click here for entire story)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Even Editorial Boards Laud Pawlenty's Spending Restraint

If the editorial boards around the state are singing Governor Pawlenty's praises for being fiscally responsible, and pulling back the reigns on government spending, he must have really done something remarkable when he line-item vetoed a bunch of pork out of the legislature's bonding bill earlier this week.

We’re probably starting to sound like a broken record, but thank goodness for Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty. Someone in state government has to be an adult and that responsibility has been taken up by the second-term Republican. This week, the governor vetoed about $200 million in borrowing projects lawmakers had approved. This still left more than $700 million in the state bonding bill, but the weeping and wailing among legislators began before the veto ink had even dried. (emphasis mine)

. . .

The most important fact in all of this is that it isn’t just political gamesmanship. There are real consequences to the state overextending itself, especially in times of economic difficulty. Prolonging that difficulty is one reality. Creating a state that is a burden to taxpayers, instead of their ally, is even worse. (excerpts from editorial, click here to read entire piece) (Fairmont Sentinel: "Pawlenty puts limits on spending")

Thank goodness for Governor Pawlenty! There are real consequences to the state overextending itself. Creating a state that is a burden to taxpayers instead of their ally, is even worse.

Well written.

That's why we can't help but agree with the spirit, if not the manner, of Pawlenty's action. Among many legislators, there seems to be an attitude that the bonding bill doesn't involve real money, that even in a time when belt-tightening is happening everywhere, this statewide "jobs program" should be as big as possible. "Share the wealth!" and "We want our fair share!" seem to be the rallying cries, as city and state officials keep score of who received how much and fight to be first in line for the next round of handouts.

Does the bonding bill fund important projects? Absolutely. Would we favor nixing the whole concept? Absolutely not.

But we're more convinced than ever that when things get tight, Minnesota shouldn't keep charging things on its credit card as if unemployment were low, the stock market was soaring and homes were selling in six days, not six months. (excerpted from editorial, click here to read entire piece). (Rochester Post-Bulletin: "Pawlenty's message 'Show restraint, or I'll do it for you'")

Saying 'enough is enough,' drawing a line in the sand, blocking and tackling, or whatever visual one wants to put forward to describe the kind of restraint and fiscal discipline we have seen from Governor Pawlenty, he is THE leader (not just in MN, but around the country) in pushing a fiscally conservative agenda that respects the taxpayer.

How novel.

Thanks Gov!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Great Job Governor Pawlenty

Thank heavens for Governor Pawlenty. Once again, he has provided fiscal discipline when the DFL legislature was totally out of control. His actions to trim the bill from $925 million to $717 million show once again that he has his hand firmly on the reins of government. Great job Governor Pawlenty!

Click here to send an email to Governor Tim Pawlenty to thank him for his line-item vetoes.

Fiscal Sanity in St. Paul

We've witnessed, in Minnesota, some of the most dramatic and remarkable legislative overreach in a generation this 2008 legislative session.

Today, Minnesotans are paying over $3.00/gal. for gas, and part because of the largest tax increase in Minnesota History.

Yesterday, Governor Pawlenty once again stepped up to the plate, wielding his veto pen, and brought a little fiscal restraint and financial responsibility to St. Paul by line-item vetoing $208 million from a bonding bill that exceeded what the governor said was acceptable in this economic climate.

ST. PAUL -- A sizable chunk of the Legislature's borrow-to-build plan fell victim to Gov. Tim Pawlenty's line-item veto Monday, including high-profile mass transit, zoo and museum projects.

Pawlenty shaved $208 million from a bill authorizing $925 million in general debt for construction projects around the state. He had warned lawmakers not to give him a bill that big, but he cut individual projects rather than blocking the whole bill.

"Somebody has to be fiscally responsible. That job falls to me," Pawlenty said. (excerpt from article)

I suppose the argument will be made that Minnesota will be a lesser state without the funding that was vetoed for the brass sheet music lending library in Chatfield, or gorilla cages at the Como Zoo, but I think we'll survive.

At least the rhetoric after the line-item vetoes has remained respectful, professional and rational. (sarcasm)

"I want to know why the governor hates the people of St. Paul," said Senator Ellen Anderson.

Of course, it was this sort of rhetoric that lead to a pork-laden bonding bill far exceeding what the governor told legislators (such as Senator Anderson) before they put the bill on his desk in the first place.

Rep. Paul Kohls put it as succinctly and respectfully as it has been stated when he said, "The governor makes a compelling case that we can't bust the credit-card limit."

(NOTE: Significant difference between this statement and saying the governor HATES all the citizens of an entire city)

The truth is, we are entering a time of economic uncertainty. The time for exercising fiscal restraint and keeping a lid on taxes is now. (It is always actually)

There is a strong argument to be made that the Government should always forgo the convenient because it has no role in anything but the essential (and often times not even there).

Certainly it is responsible to forgo the convenient in a time of economic uncertainty.

Can we wait a year or so before we add a music lending library to the State's credit card?

Will the state survive if we don't wait until 2009 or later to put put gorilla cage on Minnesota's credit card?

The taxpayers are lucky that Governor Pawlenty has taken such a bold leadership role this session.

His opponents in the legislature seem to believe money grows on trees (possibly the trees growing in the gorilla cages they want to fund).

But Governor Pawlenty has stood steadfast and strong for the taxpayer. (a sentence I could cut and paste into everything we write about him).

Monday, March 17, 2008

With Gov. Pawlenty, MN Could Go GOP in Nov?

Chris Cillizza, author of the Washington Post's Blog "The Fix" has begun a series on states that may flip this November in the presidential race from the way they voted in 2004.

Of the current top ten, as Cillizza sees it, only two fall into the category of states that may go Republican even though they went Democrat in 2004. Minnesota is one of them, should Senator McCain have the foresight and wisdom to choose Governor Pawlenty as his running mate this fall.

The Fix’s Chris Cillizza announced on Friday that he’s going to begin dedicating his Friday Line to rating which states are most likely to flip from red to blue (or vice versa) in the presidential election. In last week’s Line, Cillizza offered his base-Line and predicted that eight of the 10 states most likely to flip were carried by George W. Bush.

9. Minnesota (Kerry 51%) – “If [Republican Gov. Tim] Pawlenty is picked [as McCain’s running mate], Minnesota is in play and could certainly move up the Line.” It’s no surprise the Republicans picked the Twin Cities for their Convention. (excerpted from Cillizza post. Click here to head post in its entirety)

John McCain has a lot of factors to consider when selecting his Vice Presidential running mate. He needs to consider geography (electoral college), loyalty, ideology and demographics. Cillizza is absolutely correct that choosing Pawlenty will help deliver Minnesota (he forgets in this post Iowa and Wisconsin).

We will continue to follow Cillizza and other analysts we Senator McCain moves through his decision making process.

Another Judicial Home Run

As we've discussed before, Governor Pawlenty has worked diligently to right the ship of state here in Minnesota, seeking to fundamentally shift the public policy paradigm on issue after issue after issue.

He has moved, albeit slowly by necessity, some of the institutional red-tape within the bureaucracy. And despite the make up of the legislature, has tried to demand any legislation that crosses his desk have measurable benchmarks and legislative sunsets.

But nowhere will Governor Pawlenty have left a more positive mark on the state than in the way he has reshaped the judiciary.

Today, Governor Pawlenty appointed Eric Magnuson to be the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court (replacing a very fine and honorable Chief Justice Russell Anderson who will be retiring in June).

Magnuson is a well respected attorney, always a student of the law and will be a Supreme Court Justice who respects the rule of law and the intent of the constitution. I have the highest level of confidence that we will not see Justice Magnuson attempting to legislate from the bench.

In appointing Magnuson, Governor Pawlenty said, "Eric is nationally recognized for his appellate advocacy and writing, and is consistently ranked among the top appellate attorneys by his peers. He has argued hundreds of cases to the state and federal appellate courts covering a wide range of issues over the course of his 30-year career. Eric has also taken on leadership positions in his law firms and in legal professional associations, which will serve him well as he assumes the leadership of state’s judicial system. He will be an outstanding Chief Justice of the Minnesota Supreme Court."

On the seven member Minnesota Supreme Court, a majority of four are Governor Pawlenty appointees. And of the four Governor Pawlenty appointees, 100% are rock-solid, with a tremendous amount of respect for their role as judges (as opposed to some sort of super-legislator in a black robe).

These appointments will have a lasting and real effect on the state of Minnesota for decades to come, and we all owe Governor Pawlenty a debt of gratitude for his backbone and tenacity on judicial appointments.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Love to See These News Reports

The sun was shining today and it is looking more and more like Spring.

Today, the AP is reporting that Governor Pawlenty will announce tomorrow his choice to fill the outgoing Chief Justice Russel Anderson's spot on the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Governor Pawlenty has been the most successful Governor in the history of Minnesota appointing rock-solid jurists with a penchant for actually respecting the rule of law and a strict construction of the state's constitution. This next appointment will mean that 4 of the 7 members of the current Supreme Court will have been chosen by Pawlenty.

Please check back to Party of Pawlenty with a full analysis of his announcement tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Governor Pawlenty and the Supreme Court

One of the unsung items of serious heroics during the Pawlenty tenure has been his tremendous success in appointing Judges and Justices with true respect for the Constitution and the Rule of Law.

In June, Chief Justice Russell Anderson will step down from the court giving Governor Pawlenty a majority of members on the court appointed by him during his time as Governor.

A quick side note on Chief Justice Anderson.

I've had the honor of knowing Chief Justice Anderson since I was very young. I attended grade school, high school and even college with his daughter. Chief Justice Anderson was gracious enough to swear me in to the state bar in his chamber after I was admitted. He is a class act, a cautious jurist, and wonderful person.

Now, Governor Pawlenty will have a chance to continue to make long-term, positive, institutional change in Minnesota by appointing yet another honest Justice who will not use the black robe as a tool to be a super-legislator. Governor Pawlenty has consistently appointed well respected jurists who are committed to respecting the law, and respecting his or her role as an umpire calling balls and strikes rather than a batter stepping up to the plate.

The departure means Pawlenty will have named a majority of justices over his five years in office.

Pawlenty previously named G. Barry Anderson, Lorie Gildea and Christopher Dietzen to the Supreme Court.

Dietzen was selected in November for the most recent high court vacancy. Pawlenty has used a more insular selection process for the Supreme Court than he has for lower court appointments.

"We've been through several Appeals Court and Supreme Court appointments recently, so we're familiar with the talent pool," Pawlenty spokesman Brian McClung said. "The governor will make his decision based on that and other information." (Excerpted from Article. Click here to read article in its entirety).

I wish Chief Justice Anderson well in his retirement. He has been the consummate public servant, an honorable Chief Justice and a wonderful guy.

Governor Pawlenty will undoubtedly choose yet another strong voice for judicial respect and restraint.

I know this to be true because he has been in office since 2003 and has never missed on this issue. Not once.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Fiscal Restraint and Economic Stimulus

Is it such a novel idea that Minnesota's $1 billion projected budget deficit should be solved by spending less and stimulating our economy by confiscating fewer of Minnesota family's hard earned dollars in taxes?

Just a week after Democrats in the State Legislature voted to impose on the people of Minnesota the largest tax increase in Minnesota history, we now find ourselves with a $1 billion deficit. (oh, and not to stray too far away, after this massive Democrat gas tax increase gas prices are up 9 cents per gallon from just two weeks ago).

There will be calls (mark my words) to increase taxes further while we increase more and more taxes on the people of Minnesota in order to solve this budget shortfall.

This, obviously, would be a huge mistake. Why would the state of Minnesota stick it further to the taxpayers, and think that revenues will increase to cover ever increasing spending?

Governor Pawlenty has a different approach.

Governor Pawlenty is asking the state legislature to start thinking about Minnesota families. He is asking the Government to exercise spending restraint, and asking the legislature to pass legislation taking fewer dollars on purchases from Minnesota families through an actual, real cut in the state's sales tax.

Staring down a nearly $1 billion projected deficit, Gov. Tim Pawlenty said Friday that the state must scale back health care and higher ed spending, dip into reserves and, in a surprise move, cut the state sales tax.

Pawlenty rebuked the DFL-controlled Legislature for overriding his veto of gasoline and metro sales tax increases, and said lowering the state sales tax by one-eighth of 1 percent would partly neutralize those increases.

The cut, he said, could also serve as "a modest stimulus" to the economy.

"The Minnesota economy is under great strain," Pawlenty said, noting that the housing collapse, credit crisis, skyrocketing oil prices, a grinding war and global economic changes have all taken their toll and may do so for years.

"It's important to recognize that the country and Minnesota face great challenges," he said.

Pawlenty's recommendations for the rest of the current two-year budget period would reduce the growth in state spending by $341 million. (Excerpted from article. Click here to read the entire article).

It is too easy for the Government, when faced with a shortfall in the Government's budget, to simply take more and more from families while it keeps spending and spending.

After all, it isn't their money. It doesn't come out of their pocket. Until we get to a 100% tax burden, there is a huge pot of money just sitting there for these legislators to fill Government spending gaps.


In the real world, it doesn't work that way, and there are unintended consequences to burdensome taxation and wasteful Government spending.

Like deficits. (yeah, the type like we are facing now).

Until Governor Pawlenty has a more family friendly legislature, he is going to take his case for fiscal restraint and economic stimulus right to the citizens of Minnesota.

In fact, his campaign committee is advertising right now to make sure the people know what is happening to their family budget every day in St. Paul.

Click here to listen to Governor Pawlenty making the case to Minnesota citizens.

Friday, February 29, 2008

From The Star Tribune: "Pawlenty Said That Tax Increases Were A Non-Starter"

"As he has in the past, Pawlenty said that tax increases were a non-starter. 'I will not be supporting a tax increase to get revenue into the system,' he said." Source: Star Tribune, February 29, 2008

Click here for the complete story.


While Governor Pawlenty rules out tax increases to solve the budget deficit, DFL legislative leaders refuse to rule out tax increases.

Pawlenty Calls for Overhaul of Tax Code

This is great.

In the aftermath of the passage of the biggest tax increase in Minnesota history (over his veto), Governor Pawlenty is calling for fundamental change in the way we collect taxes in the state of Minnesota.

All too often, our tax and spending priorities are completely backwards.

  • We tax productivity to spend on idleness.
  • We avoid user fees for non-essential government services, and increase taxes to spend on services the taxpayers will never use.
  • We say we can't afford to do the things Government is supposed to do, and turn around and spend millions on a host of programs Government should never touch.
  • We concoct and convolute spending formulas that are constantly amended and virtually never evaluated.
What a breath of fresh air that Governor Pawlenty is going to address this.

Gov. Tim Pawlenty is creating a tax reform commission that will aim to update the state's tax code.

In a statement, Pawlenty called the current system of taxation outdated and said reworking it would improve Minnesota's competitive position with other states and countries.

In his executive order on Friday, Pawlenty mandated the commission and called for changes to the tax code that will promote long-term economic prosperity. (Click on Excerpt to see article in its entirety)

Minnesota is one of the highest taxed states in the country, and Minnesotans generally have become quite adverse to the overly burdensome and questionably effective tax and spend policies of our government.

I contend that if the GOP brand hadn't been tainted in DC by excessive spending and scandal over the past few years, the GOP in Minnesota would be dominating elections in large part because of the punitive taxation and escalating and esoteric (and not in a good way) spending by state government here.

Governor Pawlenty has taken on this problem step by step in a very prudent way. He solved the largest per capita budget deficit in the nation a few years back without raising taxes. He has wielded his veto pen like Lancelot.

And now he is going to take a major overhaul of the whole code right to the people (the people who reelected him in the worst Republican year in a generation).

Thanks Governor for your vision and foresight!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

AP: "Governor lashes back; says override will spark 'tax revolt'"

"Pawlenty sternly rebuked lawmakers who voted to override his veto of a bill raising the gas tax, local sales taxes and vehicle registration fees to pay for $6.6 billion in transportation projects. Eight Republicans in the Legislature joined every Democrat in supporting the first successful override attempt during Pawlenty's tenure.

'You can mark the calendar, yesterday will be the day that began a tax revolt in Minnesota,' Pawlenty said. The bill, he added, 'took a bucket of tax increases and dumped it on the head of Minnesotans.'

He predicted the bill will haunt DFL House members campaigning for re-election this fall.'" Source: Associated Press, February 26, 2008

Click here for the complete story.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Statement from Governor Pawlenty Regarding DFL Override

Saint Paul – The following is a statement from Governor Tim Pawlenty regarding the override of the Governor’s veto of an approximately $7 billion tax increase, including a gas tax increase, license tab tax increase, sales tax increase, car rental tax increase and a new excise tax on vehicle purchases.

"The DFL-controlled legislature's override of this veto shows they're clearly out-of-touch with Minnesotans who are facing rising gas prices, heating costs and other expenses in tough economic times. Raising taxes is always the DFL’s go-to solution and that's bad for Minnesota’s families and our economy.

"While the federal government is issuing tax rebate checks, Democrats in Minnesota have decided to burden our families with hundreds of dollars a year in new taxes to pay for a massive $7 billion tax increase."

Legislators On the Floor Now to Increase Taxes over Governor Pawlenty's Veto

Governor Pawlenty, who normally skates out when playing hockey, has found himself playing goalie in recent times against massive tax increases.

As I type this, the state legislature is in the process of trying to remove our goalie for the taxpayer. They are working today to override Governor Pawlenty's veto of this huge tax hike.

Governor Pawlenty has made it abundantly clear that he opposes the override of his veto.

Stay tuned as the debate takes shape over the next hour or so.

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Line: Let's Get Serious About VeepStakes!

Chris Cillizza over at "The Fix" (The Washington Post Political Blog) has an interesting piece on the VeepStakes.

Just as everyone who is looking at McCain's options with any credibility has done, he places Governor Pawlenty high on the list of prospects.

* Tim Pawlenty: The two-term Minnesota governor has to be considered the frontrunner at the moment to be McCain's pick. He hails from the electorally important Midwest, is young enough to balance concerns about McCain's age, and he stuck by the Arizona senator in the darkest days of the campaign. The criticism that Pawlenty is an unknown on the national stage may, in fact, be an argument in his favor -- voters won't bring any preconceived notions about him to the ticket. Never forget that one of the guiding principles in picking a VP is to find someone who is comfortable being seen but not heard. Want more about the man they call "Tpaw"? Make sure to read Jonathan Martin's profile of the man.

(Click here for the entire post)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Pawlenty Orders State Hiring Freeze

"With darkness gathering on the fiscal horizon, Gov. Tim Pawlenty on Tuesday imposed an immediate hiring freeze across state government that could leave all but the most critical unfilled positions vacant.

In the few cases where vacant positions are filled, Pawlenty said in a letter on Tuesday, 'every hiring decision must be overseen ... and the reasons for filling the position must be submitted in writing to the Commissioner of Employee Relations.'

There were no immediate estimates on the savings such a move could yield, but state officials know they must prepare for an economic outlook that is increasingly dire.

The state's $373 million projected deficit is expected to grow substantially when the state's economic forecast is released next week. In addition, unemployment rates are on the rise and income growth has slowed. The imminent prospect of a merger between Northwest Airlines, one of the state's largest employers, and rival Delta Airlines has added to the financial turmoil." Source: Star Tribune, February 20, 2008

Click here for the complete story.


"'This is one way that state government can do its share as we deal with a budget deficit,' said Pawlenty spokesman Brian McClung. 'We know the deficit is expected to grow and state government has to live within its means.'" Source: Star Tribune, February 20, 2008

Click here for the complete story.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Bloggosphere Abuzz With Pawlenty for Veep Talk

The term "conventional wisdom" may be just a bit premature with reference to the idea that Senator McCain should choose Governor Pawlenty as his Vice-Presidential running mate, but the bloggosphere and even the mainstream media is certainly abuzz with discussion of all the reasons it is the perfect fit (oddly enough, many pundits and analysts seem to agree with our T-Paw Top Ten)

Aside from a healthy discussion of this topic on today's "Meet the Press" here is a small sample of some of the discussion from around the bloggosphere.

Steadfast McCain ally sparks veep talk (Jonathan Martin, Politico)

Even through the McCain campaign’s darkest days in 2007, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty remained a steadfast ally to the Arizona senator in his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
Vin Weber, a Minnesota congressman-turned-Washington-lobbyist who is one of Pawlenty’s biggest boosters, ticks off the list of appealing traits.

“First of all, his age is attractive,” Weber says, hinting at the nearly quarter-century difference between his fellow Minnesotan and the 71-year-old McCain. “Second, he’s from outside Washington. Third, he represents a battleground part of the country. And he has a nice balance of, on one hand being totally acceptable to the conservative wing of the party, especially to social conservatives, but at the same time sharing a couple of key maverick strains of thought with McCain.”

Weber isn't Pawlenty's only Washington admirer. Sara Taylor, former White House political director and a veteran of both Bush-Cheney campaigns, contacted this reporter to offer unsolicited observations on the governor.

Declining to say how she got wind of the story, Taylor lavished praise on Pawlenty. "By far, he's the strongest candidate" to serve as McCain's running mate, she said.

"He's a conservative, rock-n-roll Republican and is counterintuitive to the party stereotype that we're old and rich,” says Taylor, who recalled visiting St. Paul and finding the governor jamming in his office to recording artist Bruce Springsteen. “He's young and blue-collar."

And, Taylor said, in a potential race against the 46-year-old Barack Obama, Pawlenty would be "as good as our party has for that [matchup]."

There is another key factor working in Pawlenty’s favor. Unlike Weber, until last week a top policy adviser to Mitt Romney, the governor was an early and active McCain supporter, helping to lobby fellow governors as early as December 2006, and he stayed loyal through the unpleasantness last year.

“He stuck with us through thin,” says senior McCain adviser Charlie Black. “He went anywhere we asked and did anything we asked him to do.

“He is a rising star in the party,” adds Black. (Excerpts from article. Click here to read in its entirety).

Governor Tim Pawlenty- The Right man for VP

Many news sources are reporting that Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota is near the top of most of Senator John McCain’s lists for Vice President of the United States. I am one person who thinks that he should be at the very top of all
of those lists.

I became a fan of Governor Pawlenty last year when I had the opportunity to see him speak at CPAC. At that time I did not know much about him other than he was the Republican Governor of Minnesota and a steadfast supporter of my candidate for President Senator John McCain. I was impressed by his articulate speech and ideas for the Republican party.

After coming home from the convention I took the time to look into Pawlenty’s past and learned that he came from a working class background and was the first in his family to go to college. Pawlenty did not rely on anyone but himself to make himself someone, which is one of things I think is a fundemental Republican principle. When many people think of Republicans they think of country club rich people, but that mold most certainly does not fit Pawlenty who still from time to time plays pick up ice hockey.

So Pawlenty is young, smart, energetic, charasmatic, and conservative. It is for these and many more reasons that I hope that Senator John McCain chooses Governor Tim Pawlenty to be his running mate in this crucial election. I urge my fellow Republicans to do some research on Governor Pawlenty and i believe as well you will become a supporter of his too. (Excerpts from Article. Click here to read in its entirety).
And there is so much more.

We'll continue to track this developing story of bloggers and Conservatives all across the country beginning to advocate form Governor Pawlenty to be chosen as Senator McCain's running mate this fall.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

T-Paw Top Ten

Obviously there has been a lot of buzz all across the country about Governor Pawlenty being chosen as Senator McCain's Vice Presidential running mate. It is becoming widely recognized that he is the natural choice (and in fact, would have been for a few of the candidates before McCain became the presumptive nominee).

I'm no David Letterman, and in fact none of these are even vaguely funny, but I thought it would be good for our readers to see a top ten list of reasons why Senator McCain should (and I believe must) choose Governor Pawlenty has his running mate.

T-Paw Top Ten

  1. Fiscal Conservative Leader – During the last few years when many have felt the GOP has lost its way on spending and fiscal discipline, Governor Pawlenty solved an historic budget deficit (the largest per capita in the country) without raising taxes. (while keeping a lid on spending too!)

  1. Unabashed Social Conservative – Governor Pawlenty signed into law three of the most important pieces of pro-life legislation in a generation, stood steadfast in support of the marriage amendment, and has dramatically reshaped the Minnesota Supreme Court; appointing Conservative Justices who strictly interpret the Constitution rather than making law from the bench.

  1. Minnewissawa Votes and Media – Not only will Governor Pawlenty be an effective advocate in the key swing region of the upper Midwest, but he has already run and won statewide twice in a media market that covers significant portions of Iowa and Wisconsin (along with Minnesota). If the GOP needs to pick a southerner just to win the south this election, we’ve already lost. (Click Here)

  1. Young and Energetic Voice – Governor Pawlenty is a 47 year old hockey playing, marathon running, roller blader who is known for being a tireless campaigner and more importantly a tireless public servant. (Seriously, his young staff can’t keep up).

  1. Attractive to the Conservative Base – Governor Pawlenty can effectively rally the Christian Conservative part of the GOP base as an Evangelical Christian who attends one of Minnesota’s largest Mega-Churches where his pastor is the President of the National Association of Evangelicals.

  1. “Sams Club Republican” – Governor Pawlenty, the son of a truck driver in a blue collar neighborhood, can take our economically conservative message directly to the economically disadvantaged and downtrodden with credibility and persuasiveness (he’s done exactly that time and time again). He is the first member of his family to graduate from college and remains closely connected to his blue collar roots.

  1. Loyal Team Player – Governor Pawlenty was a McCain supporter when it was hard, and not necessarily cool to be a McCain supporter. We don’t need a fair-weather friend campaigning as McCain’s running mate. Governor Pawlenty is a friend and a believer in the leadership of Senator McCain.

  1. Executive Leadership – Governor Pawlenty is a Conservative outside-the-beltway maverick executive who is a perfect compliment for an inside-the-beltway maverick leader. He can help fix Washington!

  1. Straight Talk with a Smile – Governor Pawlenty is known in Minnesota as an exceedingly honest, boy scout-like public servant. He tells it like it is, and whether you agree or disagree with him, you end up liking him and believing he is doing what he believes to be right.

  1. Mrs. Pawlenty – And of course we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out his amazing wife (his Red Hot Smokin’ Wife as the Governor likes to say) who is an articulate former Judge currently sitting on the board of a conservative Christian college. Mary Pawlenty is a great asset on the campaign trail!

Check back often to "Party of Pawlenty" as we track the legislative session and the Vice-Presidential selection process.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

State Of The State: Pawlenty’s Veto Pen Is Inked Up And Ready

During his 2008 State of the State Address delivered today in St. Cloud, Governor Tim Pawlenty had a clear message for DFL legislators: don't even think about raising taxes on Minnesota families and businesses. It's clear that the Governor is fired up and ready to fight for taxpayers. The only surprising thing is the DFL's extraordinary desire to hit Minnesotans with a number of tax increases — gas tax, license tab tax, sales tax, income tax, etc. — when citizens are already facing $3 a gallon gas and other burdens.

I encourage all of the dedicated readers of Minnesota Democrats Exposed and Party of Pawlenty who support the Governor's tough stand against tax increases to email him today at and thank him for protecting Minnesota taxpayers…and email your state legislators and ask them not to attach the "jumper cables to your wallet."

Here are some excerpts from the Governor's State of the State Address today:

"As we tackle the deficit, we must remember that Minnesota'shardworking families are already squeezed enough. They're paying morefor gas, food, and health care. The last thing they need is government rummaging around in their pockets looking for more. Government must learn to live within its means. We should not add to the burden on Minnesota families by raising their taxes."

"The well-being of the people we serve depends on their ability to have good-paying jobs. That, in turn, depends upon the willingness ofcompanies to invest, stay, and grow in Minnesota. However, Minnesota's tax policies, job climate, and large government discourage economic growth. We need to reduce taxes and regulations thatdiscourage job growth, income generation, investment, entrepreneurialactivity, research, and exports."

"I still have an important tool to restrain taxes and spending. I call it the taxpayer protection pen, otherwise known as the veto pen. As you know, I will not hesitate to use it to stop government fromdigging into your wallets."

"We should also protect homeowners from unreasonable property tax increases. So once again, I call for Minnesota to join the many states that have capped property taxes."

MN GOP Press Release: “Republican Party Of Minnesota Commends Governor Pawlenty’s State Of The State Address”

St. Paul- Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Ron Carey today issued the following statement regarding Governor Pawlenty's State of the State address.

"I commend Governor Pawlenty for his strong opposition to Democrat tax increases on Minnesota families and businesses. At a time when many Minnesotans are being squeezed, the last thing we need are more Democrat tax hikes. By making government live within its means, Governor Pawlenty continues to hold government accountable for results."

Governor Pawlenty to Deliver "State of the State"

Governor Pawlenty will deliver the annual State of the State Address from St. Cloud this morning.

As the gavel fell this week to begin the session, a flurry of tax hikes and regulations seem to define the road ahead from the legislative body. I will be watching for how Governor Pawlenty addresses these and other issues when he steps up to the mic in St. Cloud.

Here are all of the details of the address. You can watch the speech live via Webcast by clicking on the link towards the bottom of this post.

Feb. 13. 11 a.m. STATE OF THE STATE _ Gov. Tim Pawlenty delivers State of the State address. Media should RSVP to obtain credentials by 5 p.m. Feb. 5

Location: St. Cloud Civic Center, 10 S. Fourth Ave., St. Cloud

Contacts: Alex Carey, (651) XXX-XXXX

Click here for State of the State live webcast, Wednesday, Feb. 13, 11:00 a.m.

Click Here for Replay of the Speech

Monday, January 7, 2008

Pawlenty Shows Leadership on Illegal Immigration

As most Minnesotans know (for our readers across the country, indulge me) a good barometer of strong, common sense public policy is when it is soundly criticized by Star Tribune's anti-intellectual "journalist" Nick Coleman.

Today, Nick levels some heavy criticism against Governor Pawlenty for taking a strong stand against Illegal Immigration today.

Ergo, Governor Pawlenty got it exactly right.

Well, I suppose it isn't enough to judge what is right and correct based solely on finding out how Nick Coleman sees things and choose the opposite. But it is a pretty good gauge.

The point is that Governor Pawlenty stood before the people of Minnesota today and laid out a common sense plan to manage the current and growing problem of Illegal Immigration in Minnesota (hopefully using his mega phone as the chairman of the National Governor's Association to take his plans nationwide).

Before I go through the specific proposal, let me first highlight a word that is often lost in this debate among some (read: Nick Coleman).

That word is "Illegal."

il·le·gal [i-lee-guhl] Pronunciation Key –adjective
1.forbidden by law or statute.
2.contrary to or forbidden by official rules, regulations, etc.: The referee ruled that it was an illegal forward pass.

One would assume that a clear understanding of the essence of the word would lead towards general and widespread opposition to "Illegal Immigration." But alas, that isn't the case.

Not one proposal established by Governor Pawlenty today targets lawful immigration. I can't speak for the Governor, but I know him to have a good heart, and I am pretty sure he has an unparalleled level of compassion and respect for good people from other parts of our small world who seek to immigrate to the United States respecting the laws governing that process.

If the very first act upon arriving to our open and welcoming country is to break the very laws designed to welcome them, what can we expect of their time here thereafter? Perhaps it isn't a perfect gauge of future behavior, but it should certainly give us pause.

So Governor Pawlenty has developed a handful of common sense proposals to help deal with this issue:

Pawlenty also announced today that he used his gubernatorial power to:

Pawlenty said the steps are necessary to respond to illegal immigration.

"If you have a country that's based on the rule of law and the rule of law gets knowingly cast aside and we allow illegal behavior to continue then the rule of law is diminished and one of the cornerstones of our country gets eroded in a pretty pronounced way," he said.

"These are the types of steps we believe that Republicans, Democrats and a broad cross section of Minnesotans can agree are reasonable steps towards better enforcement of illegal immigration and our country and our state need that," he said.

(Excerpted from Article)

Much of this was bold, executive orders, but much of the rest requires legislative action.

When the legislature gavels down in February, perhaps they will have the foresight and wisdom to follow the Governor's lead on this issue.