April 11, 2018

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Latest News, Minnesota

ICYMI: Editorial: Pawlenty rips Trump then votes for him a month later? How does he reconcile that?

In case you missed it, Tim Pawlenty’s flip-flopping on his support for President Trump is already causing problems in his run for governor. The Crookston Times published an editorial slamming Pawlenty for touting his support for Trump after calling him “unfit” and “unhinged” a month before the 2016 election. The editorial rightly asks Pawlenty the question many Minnesota voters are wondering: If you say one thing but your subsequent actions betray your words, what good are your words?

It looks like primary voters see right through him. In a larger takedown of Pawlenty’s campaign launch, right-wing columnist John Gilmore wrote that “no one with an IQ over 65 believes” Pawlenty really supports Trump.

Read an excerpts of the editorial below or the entire piece here.

Crookston Times Editorial:  Pawlenty rips Trump then votes for him a month later? How does he reconcile that?

A month before the 2016 election, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, who at the time was being handsomely compensated as a lobbyist for big banks in Washington, D.C., called Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump “unfit” for office and “unhinged” and a whole lot of other unflattering things.

The infamous “Access Hollywood” tape had just been released, in which Trump bragged about how he likes to sexually assault women and, as a celebrity, he can do what he wants and get away with it. That was too much for Pawlenty, and in his harsh criticism of Trump he said he was withdrawing his support for him. Then, that November, Pawlenty voted for Trump.

This is the way it usually goes with politics and politicians

But there’s a bigger issue here, and it comes down to voters being able to believe in someone, in this case, a politician. Bigger yet is the issue of what that politician, Pawlenty, truly believes in. If you say one thing but your subsequent actions betray your words, what good are your words? Why should anyone believe anything you say from that point on? Why should they not assume that your words are largely hollow and simply an effort to boost your own standing in the public eye? In the fall of 2016, Pawlenty in no uncertain terms said that Trump, as a politician but also a human being, had no business being President of the United States. Whether you agreed with him or not, Pawlenty wanted everyone to think that he was taking a stand, that he was standing up for his principles, and those principles would not allow him to support Trump. 

And then he goes and votes for him?

A politician being insincere is certainly not unfamiliar waters for voters to navigate. But Pawlenty is asking a lot here. He said one thing and a month later did the opposite, and a year and a half later he seems pretty proud of himself. At best, it’s unseemly. At worst, it’s greasy.