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How else would one campaign?

November 11, 2009 - Lee Smith
You may have noticed (his political foes certainly have) that Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is making lots of appearances outside Minnesota these days. He was in Iowa the other night and is heading to New Hampshire. He's also been traveling all over the country, making speeches and attending fund-raisers. So what? ... Exactly.

I think Pawlenty has done OK as governor, given dire budget problems. Could he have done some things differently or better. Sure. Hindsight is perfect. But I don't believe he is letting Minnesotans down just because he appears to be running for president in 2012. How else are governors supposed to campaign? Or anyone else currently serving in public office? Do we want to discourage interest? I'm sure you'll recall that when Sarah Palin resigned as Alaska governor, she got hammered by some as a "quitter." Now I get emails nearly every day mocking Pawlenty because he has a busy travel agenda. In politics, you simply cannot win.

The Minnesota legislative session will get started again this winter and I assume Pawlenty will be in St. Paul. If he's not, then we should all be upset with the governor. But right now, people should get off his back. I don't hear anyone complaining about the dozens of state lawmakers who are lining up for Pawlenty's job and who campaigning around Minnesota. We should welcome their visits to hear what they have to say.


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