Entries in Tim Pawlenty (93)


Pawlenty Calls Out Romney on Debt Ceiling Debate

Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty on Friday called out frontrunner Mitt Romney for not outlining his stance on the debt ceiling debate raging in Washington these days.

On Twitter Pawlenty posted a link to his interview with CNBC’s Larry Kudlow and quipped, “What say you @MittRomney? Help us fight back.”

In his interview with Kudlow, Pawlenty said he does not want Republicans to agree to the Obama administration’s request to raise the debt limit unless Democrats agree to “structural real reforms.”

“I’ve said all along, ‘Don’t do it unless you get something really good for it’ and I’ve been in favor of structural real reforms that will fix the problem in the intermediate and long-term,” Pawlenty said.

At a Facebook town hall in Iowa last Thursday, Pawlenty urged Republicans in Congress to “stand strong” and “draw lines in the sand” in the debt ceiling debate.  

“I urge our Republicans in Washington D.C. to stand strong. The only way you get real change in Washington D.C. is to draw lines in the sand,” he said. “And if you notice, most politicians are like running water downhill. They want least resistance. So it’s helpful, in having them do bold and courageous things, to put up some points of resistance. And there is a moment here now, it’s not an easy moment, but it’s a dramatic and it’s an important moment, for our conservatives in Washington to stand tall and stand strong and stand courageously, and say the answer to America’s  future is not to pile more debt on our children and our grandchildren. The answer is to get our financial house in order and to live within our means, just like families have to do, just like businesses have to do, and just what we’d expect in our personal lives."

In addition, according to the New York Times, Pawlenty told voters in Iowa last week, “I hope and pray and believe they should not raise the debt ceiling.”

Pawlenty’s jab is not the first time Romney has come under fire for not taking a more active role in the debt ceiling debate. Earlier this week it was David Axelrod who prodded the former Massachusetts governor.

On Wednesday Axelrod tweeted, “Anyone heard from Mitt Romney lately? Where is he on McConnell plan? On the debt talks? On the impact of a default? Why so quiet?”

To which Romney’s senior advisor Eric Fehrnstrom fired back, “I have a question for @davidaxelrod: Where are the jobs? We're not just on wrong track; it feels like we're tied to the tracks.”

At an event Thursday in New Hampshire, Romney was asked what he would do about the debt limit if he were president.

“The answer for the country is for the President to agree to cut federal spending and cap federal spending and put into place a balanced budget amendment,” Romney said. “That for me is the line in the sand.”

“It is within the president’s power to say to the leadership in the house and the senate that ‘I’ll cut spending I’ll cap the amount of spending and I’ll pursue a balanced budget amendment and if the president were to do that this whole debt limit problem goes away,” he added.

Pawlenty was roundly criticized last month for not confronting Romney at the New Hampshire debate when the former Minnesota governor was reluctant to use the term “ObamneyCare” that he had coined only a day earlier on “Fox News Sunday.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Pawlenty Raises $4.5 Million, with $2 Million Cash-on-Hand

Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty is set to report that he has raised a total of $4.5 million since entering the presidential race, a campaign aide has confirmed to ABC News.

Pawlenty, the former Minnesota governor, has about $2 million cash-on-hand, with around $1.4 million of that for the primary and $600,000 set aside for the general election if he makes it that far.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Five GOP Candidates Reject Controversial Marriage Vow

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) --Five GOP presidential candidates have refused to sign a controversial marriage pledge, which asks them to support outlawing pornography, upholding the Defense of Marriage Act and creating a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney as well as fellow candidates Tim Pawlenty, Jon Huntsman, Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain have not signed the Family Leader's Marriage Vow Pledge, but Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum have.

Romney was the first GOP presidential candidate who refused to sign the pledge.

"Mitt Romney strongly supports traditional marriage but he felt this pledge contained references and provisions that were undignified and inappropriate for a presidential campaign," Romney's campaign said in a statement.

On the campaign trail in Iowa Wednesday, Tim Pawlenty announced his decision not to sign the pledge, and instead released a video discussing his personal faith.

Pawlenty's decision comes just weeks before the Ames straw poll which he desperately needs to do well in. Both Santorum and especially Bachmann pose real threats to Pawlenty in Iowa.

"I deeply respect, and share, Bob Vander Platts' commitment to promoting the sanctity of marriage, a culture of life, and the core principles of the Family Leader’s Marriage Vow Pledge," he continued. "However, rather than sign onto the words chosen by others, I prefer to choose my own words, especially seeking to show compassion to those who are in broken families through no fault of their own."

The Family Leader's choice of words for their Marriage Vow may not have been the wisest.

The Iowa-based conservative group retracted a portion of the pledge's introduction earlier this week that suggested African-American children were better off under slavery than they are today.

Both Bachmann and Santorum signed the pledge while the slavery comments were still intact.

Presidential candidate Herman Cain on Wednesday became the fifth GOP presidential contender to decline to sign the group's marriage pledge.

Although Cain is making a strong play in Iowa where the group, The Family Leader, is based, he said in a statement that while he supports the organization's "commitment to supporting traditional values" his own position "encompasses their values without the need to sign the pledge."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Pawlenty Fires Back After Conan O'Brien Disses His Campaign

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- On Sunday, it was Michele Bachmann who tangled with Tim Pawlenty. On Monday, it was Conan O’Brien.

In a tweet earlier Monday, O’Brien quipped, “Is it too early to predict that Tim Pawlenty will not be a popular Halloween costume?”

Hours later Pawlenty fired back with a tweet of his own. “@ConanOBrien Wait until I unveil my Team Coco wig then everyone will want the costume. It might even deliver IA for me #ginger #iacaucus.”

In recent days -- following a dismal debate performance in New Hampshire and disappointing second-quarter fundraising numbers -- Pawlenty has had to combat a slew of pre-obituaries about his struggling campaign and his "Minnesota nice” reputation. On Friday the New York Times published a story entitled, “Will Republican Race’s First In Be The First Out?” And on Sunday NBC’s Meet the Press host David Gregory asked him, “Are you too dull to be president?”

“Well, look, if people want the entertainer-in-chief, they should vote for somebody else," Pawlenty replied.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Minnesota Natives Pawlenty, Bachmann Wage War of Words

EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The two Republican presidential candidates from Minnesota waged a war of words on Sunday as the fight for votes in neighboring Iowa heats up ahead of the Ames straw poll there next month.

The first shots were fired by former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who ripped into his fellow North Star State native, Rep. Michele Bachmann, in an interview with NBC's David Gregory on Meet the Press, calling her record "nonexistent."

"I like Congresswoman Bachmann.  I've campaigned for her.  I respect her.  But her record of accomplishment in Congress is nonexistent.  It's nonexistent," Pawlenty said.  "And so we're not looking for folks who just have speech capabilities.  We're looking for people who can lead a large enterprise in a public setting and drive it to conclusion.  I've done that, and she hasn't."

Late Sunday, Bachmann released a statement touting her record on Capitol Hill.

"Instead of negativity, I want to focus on my accomplishments," she said.  "I have fought the cap-and-trade agenda, rather than implement it, and I will work to end cap-and-trade as president of the United States.  I stood up against President Obama's support of the $700 billion bailout rather than defend it.  I was a leading voice, fighting against Obamacare and the unconstitutional individual mandates; I did not lift my voice in praise of it.  My message brought tens of thousands of Americans to Washington, D.C. to oppose Obamacare."

"As president I will not rest until Obamacare is repealed.  And I will not vote to raise the debt ceiling," she vowed.  "People can count on me as a fighter; I am proud of my record of fighting with resolve, and without apology, for our free markets, for sane fiscal policies, and in opposition to the advancement of the big government left.  As president, the American people can count on me to stand by my record of advancing pro-growth policies to put our nation back on the right track."

Right now, it is Bachmann, not Pawlenty, who is looking strong in the polls.  Bachmann, who was born in Waterloo, Iowa, came in a close second to GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney in the recent Des Moines Register poll, trailing him only 23 percent to 22 percent.  Meanwhile Pawlenty, who has made success in Iowa -- a key part of his campaign -- lagged far behind at only six percent.

Pawlenty on Sunday shrugged off his poll numbers, cautioning that early polls are poor predictors of eventual outcomes.

"I just announced my campaign six weeks ago, so I think it's a little early for that," he said.  "But, more importantly, these early polls are not a good indicator of anything.  If they were, Rudy Giuliani or Hillary Clinton would be president of the United States.  They almost never predict the outcome.  And when people get to know my record in Minnesota of, you know, reducing taxes, cutting spending, doing healthcare reform the right way -- no mandates, no takeovers -- doing public employee pension and benefit and pay reform and the like, I think my campaign will do quite well."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Pawlenty Adviser Apologizes About Bachmann's 'Sex Appeal'

Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON, D.C.) -- Tim Pawlenty's national campaign chairman, Vin Weber, is apologizing Thursday night for saying earlier today that Rep. Michele Bachmann will be "very hard to beat" in the Iowa caucuses in part because she's got "sex appeal."

"She's got hometown appeal, she's got ideological appeal, and, I hate to say it, but she's got a little sex appeal too," Weber said in an interview with The Hill.

On Wednesday night, Weber issued a statement apologizing for his comment.

"I made a mistake that was disrespectful to my friend Congresswoman Bachmann," Weber said. "I've been a Bachmann supporter in her Congressional bids and I apologize. I was not speaking on behalf of Governor Pawlenty's campaign but nevertheless, it was inappropriate and I'm sorry."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Pawlenty Adviser Apologizes for Bachmann 'Sex Appeal' Comment

ABC/Donna Svennevik(WASHINGTON) -- Tim Pawlenty's national campaign chairman, Vin Weber, is apologized Wednesday night for saying earlier that day that Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., will be "very hard to beat" in the Iowa caucuses in part because she's got "sex appeal."

"She's got hometown appeal, she's got ideological appeal, and, I hate to say it, but she's got a little sex appeal too," Weber said in an interview with The Hill.

Wednesday night Weber issued a statement apologizing for his comment.

"I made a mistake that was disrespectful to my friend Congresswoman Bachmann," Weber said. "I've been a Bachmann supporter in her congressional bids and I apologize. I was not speaking on behalf of Governor Pawlenty's campaign but nevertheless, it was inappropriate and I'm sorry."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


GOP Hopeful Tim Pawlenty Goes All Out in Iowa

Tom Williams/Roll Call/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty on Tuesday ratcheted up his push to win the Iowa Straw Poll next month -- and more importantly the caucuses next winter -- with the launch of a new television ad and the announcement that Mike Huckabee's daughter, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, has signed on to his campaign.

Huckabee Sanders will serve as a senior political adviser leading the campaign's work on the Iowa Straw Poll that will be held in Ames in August, a key part of Pawlenty's effort to win the Hawkeye State caucuses.  Four years ago Huckabee Sanders was her father's national political director when he won the Iowa caucuses.

In another move to boost his momentum in Iowa, Pawlenty hit the airwaves on Tuesday with his second television ad.  In the spot, Pawlenty touts his role in Minnesota’s government shutdown six years ago.  

"Minnesota government shutdown.  Why?  Because Tim Pawlenty would not accept Democrats’ massive tax and spending demands.  Result: Pawlenty won," the ad boasts.

Minnesota’s state government shut down once again at the end of last Thursday and the stalemate is still ongoing.  Just before the shutdown began, Pawlenty urged his fellow Republicans in the North Star State not to yield to the Democrats, led by Gov. Mark Dayton, who wants to solve the state’s $5 billion budget deficit by raising taxes on the rich.

"We have to get government spending under control.  The Democrats won't do it.  I applaud the Republicans for standing strong and encourage them to keep standing strong," Pawlenty said in a brief press conference.

In a statement released Tuesday afternoon, Pawlenty responded to a bipartisan committee formed by former Vice President Walter Mondale and former Gov. Arne Carlson by criticizing the two elder statesmen from Minnesota, reiterating his support of the GOP legislature, and again touting his record.

"Walter Mondale ran for president against Ronald Reagan on a platform that called for higher taxes.  Arne Carlson supported John Kerry, Barack Obama and other Democrats.  It should surprise no one that they both support more spending and higher taxes in Minnesota,” he said.  “We did it the right way for the last eight years, with dramatically lower spending and tax cuts.  I commend the Republicans in the Legislature for sticking to their guns, even when politicians of the past call for old-fashioned high tax and spend solutions.  The last budget on my watch ended last week with a positive balance.  The projected deficit for the upcoming two years is based on large projected spending increases, which I never would have allowed as governor.  Minnesota government is shutdown because of Democrats' insistence on Obama-esque solutions to increase spending and raise taxes."

The Democratic National Committee responded to the new Pawlenty ad by stating that the GOP candidate did not shut down the government six years ago because of a desire to cut taxes, but rather because he wanted to raise taxes on cigarettes.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Huckabee's Daughter Signs On with Pawlenty to Lead Iowa Push

Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Mike Huckabee's daughter Sarah Huckabee Sanders has signed on to Tim Pawlenty's team as a senior political adviser leading his push in Iowa, his campaign announced Tuesday.

She will lead the campaign's work on the Iowa Straw Poll that will be held in Ames in August, a key part of Pawlenty's effort to win the Iowa caucuses next winter.

“Sarah is a results-oriented person with a great track record in Iowa and around the country,” Pawlenty said in a statement. “We are very excited Sarah is joining our team just as we are hitting our stride in Iowa.”

Four years ago, Huckabee Sanders was her father's national political director when he won the Iowa caucuses.

“I’m delighted to join the Governor and First Lady in Iowa, which holds a special place in my heart,” she said. “It’s clear to me that Gov. Pawlenty has what it takes to unite the party, unite the country and beat President Obama.”

Pawlenty is planning to spend the better part of July in the Hawkeye state -- starting later this week -- as he attempts to gain momentum ahead of Ames. His campaign announced Friday that it had raised $4.2 million during the second quarter, with an undisclosed portion of that money for the general election should the former Minnesota governor secure the GOP nomination.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Pawlenty Raised $4.2 Million During Second Quarter

Scott Olson/Getty Images(ST. PAUL, Minn.) -- Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty raised $4.2 million during the second quarter of this year, his campaign announced Friday.

"Gov. Pawlenty will report that his campaign has raised about $4.2 million, and begins the third quarter with more available cash-on-hand than the Republicans who won the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary had in July 2007," his spokesman Alex Conant said in a statement Friday afternoon.

In recent weeks his campaign has tried to lower fundraising expectations, suggesting that they would come in right around the $4 million mark. While Pawlenty aides have steadfastly maintained that their fundraising is going according to plan and remains on pace for them to execute their early state strategy in Iowa and New Hampshire, the numbers released Friday may still come as a disappointment for a campaign that is still wrestling with a dismal New Hampshire debate performance and a poor showing in the recent Des Moines Register poll.

Pawlenty's $4.2 million puts him right alongside some of his GOP rivals. Jon Huntsman's campaign raised $4.1 million dollars in the second quarter, although a portion of the money -- less than half -- was donated by Huntsman himself. Rep. Ron Paul raised $4.5 million in the quarter, short of his $5 million goal. Meanwhile Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney's team has been indicating that they are on pace to raise about $20 million, although they could just be trying to set low expectations. Romney raised $10 million earlier this quarter in one single day of fundraising in Las Vegas, so he may ultimately announce a number higher than $20 million.

Larry Jacobs, a professor of politics at the University of Minnesota, told ABC News last month that Pawlenty needed to break the $10 million mark this quarter, something the former governor did not come close to doing.

"The real key is fundraising numbers," Jacobs said. "If Pawlenty is below $10 million, he's got a big problem."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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