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.


The New Conservative said...

I wrote an article about pawlenty in a series of VP candidates I'm doing. Check it out if you get the chance.

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