"Hulk Hogan," T-Paw... Really?
Tim Pawlenty implied Tuesday that there are some less-than-serious presidential hopefuls eyeing the race, with a quip that seemed to lump Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann and Donald Trump together with wrestling icon Hulk Hogan.
"You're going to have, you know, Mitt Romney who will start out as the front-runner with the most name-ID and money..." Pawlenty told CNN’s Piers Morgan in handicapping the race. "And on the other end of the continuum, you'll have perhaps Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Donald Trump, or I don't know, maybe Hulk Hogan will get in the race too. Who knows? But I think in between those two things on the continuum, there's a role for a serious person who has tackled these kinds of issues. We live in very serious times and the country's facing a grave challenge. And if we're going to restore America's promise, we're going to have to get back to leadership that is steady, clear and strong."
First he overstates Mitt Romney's "front-runner" status, as recent polling indicates that Mitt is losing support. Then he downplays Governor Palin's record by neglecting to acknowledge any of her almost two decades of experience in public service, including the Chief Executive for the State of Alaska.
Then he says, "[b]ut I think in between those two things on the continuum, there's a role for a serious person who has tackled these kinds of issues." Since when is Governor Palin NOT a "serious person?" Spearheading Conservative opposition to the White House on every issue, is indicative of a very serious individual.
Pawlenty ignored the governor's record, then attempted to tout his own by adding that line about getting "back to leadership that is steady, clear and strong." Since there hasn't been much in the news or on the blogs about Pawlenty's record, let's take a look at it, shall we?
is one blogger who has had Pawlenty's number for some time. He recently posted a piece highlighting T-Paw's past position on Cap and Trade and other hot-button issues. He wrote:
Former Minnesota Governor has been caught with his hand in the "hey, look at me, conservative base I'm a global warming skeptic" cookie jar by Think Progress, of all sources. Think Progress has this audio taken from Laura Ingraham's show that highlights his hypocrisy:You can read the whole piece here.
Pawlenty's past indiscretions against the limited government movement don't just stop at support of junk science legislation.
I wrote this in 2009, alerting true conservatives and libertarians to the fact that I think Pawlenty is a liberal wolf in pseudo-conservative sheep's clothing:
I believe and know Pawlenty to be in the big-spending GOP camp. He would be a terrible choice. Albeit he would predictably start to strut around his conservative ideals only to govern like another quasi-RINO...
Cato lists plenty of Pawlenty's big-government spending track record. He was a big runner-up for VP under McCain.
Some of the things listed at the Cato Institute that Tim Pawlenty stood by in Minnesota:
* Supports Massachusetts-style health care reform, including a “health care exchange” and an individual mandate.
* Has called for banning all prescription drug advertising, and seeks government imposed price controls for drugs offered through Medicare.
* Proposed a $4000 per child preschool program for low-income children.
* Pushed a statewide smoking ban smoking ban in workplaces, restaurants and bars.
* Imposed some of the most aggressive and expensive renewable energy mandates in the country.
* Was an ardent supporter of the farm bill.
* Received only a “C” ranking on Cato’s 2006 Governor’s Report Card, finishing below such Democrats as Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack and tied with Democratic Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell.
Pawlenty's history of creating massive government bureaucracy by going along with the Cap and Trade scheme, supporting RomneyCare like insurance mandates, and other over-reaching government programs proves that he lacks the ability to take real leadership with the issues our country currently faces. Those have been the so-called "solutions" of the past that are at the very root of the problem.
Speaking of leadership, where was then Governor Tim Pawlenty during the whole Coleman - Franken debacle? After claiming that there was "credible evidence of fraud," he turned the other cheek and certified the election results anyway.
If Governor Palin is such a marginal character, and Pawlenty is such a wonderful leader, why is he trying to replicate everything from her book cover to her policy positions? The budget debate has been raging in DC for weeks now. Governor Palin has made her position clear from day one. When the Republicans and Democrats finally came to agreement last week, Governor Palin was the first potential GOP candidate to speak up, doing so last Saturday on Fox. Pawlenty waited until Wednesday to say anything, which also just so happened to be the same day that the CBO reported it's findings that the cuts within the deal only added up to a mere $353 million, instead of the $38 billion originally reported, much less the $100 billion pledged by Republicans during last election season.
Pawlenty can downplay Governor Palin's record to the press because they will let him. They won't point out her achievements or history of fiscal discipline to challenge the narrative his campaign is trying to create. That's a given. When however, will they start asking Pawlenty questions regarding his own record? From what I've seen, he's been able thus far to give interviews listing his talking points, and offering somewhat empty platitudes to the Conservative base. I realize that the media sees nothing wrong with the big government, nanny-state mentality of the Tim Pawlenty's of the world, but the voters he's reaching out to might take issue with it.