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ICYMI – BuzzFeed: Tim Pawlenty’s Minnesota Comeback Hits A Snag
In case you missed it, BuzzFeed News reported on Tim Pawlenty’s “messy and awkward” reentry into political life. Pawlenty may have been heavily recruited by national Republicans, but he hasn’t received the same warm welcome back in Minnesota. Pawlenty skipped the GOP state party convention last weekend fearing he would lose the endorsement battle to his opponent Jeff Johnson.
His past job as a top Wall Street lobbyist in Washington D.C. hasn’t exactly endeared him to grassroots voters. Pawlenty’s campaign has been so lackluster with local Republicans that his own former lieutenant governor also endorsed Johnson over him.
Read more about Pawlenty’s floundering political comeback HERE or excerpts below:
BuzzFeed News: Tim Pawlenty’s Minnesota Comeback Hits A Snag
When Tim Pawlenty agreed to run for his old job, many Republicans greeted him as a savior.
The former two-term governor of Minnesota who had run for president and cultivated a national donor base was seen as the ideal standard-bearer for a party that has Democrats on the ropes in a traditionally blue state that’s emerged as a battleground in this year’s midterms.
Two months later, Pawlenty isn’t quite getting a cakewalk.
His decision to bypass last week’s state party convention resulted in an endorsement for his rival, Hennepin County commissioner (and 2014 gubernatorial nominee) Jeff Johnson. In skipping the event, Pawlenty acknowledged Johnson might have an advantage with the party insiders who voted on the endorsement, and he spared himself the embarrassment that could come from someone of his stature barely winning or — worse for Pawlenty — losing it.
Pawlenty is still considered the frontrunner in the August primary. But things are getting messy and awkward.An emboldened Johnson, who has been emphasizing Pawlenty’s post-gubernatorial days as a financial services lobbyist in Washington, is now calling on him to withdraw from the race. And Jennifer Carnahan, the Minnesota Republican chair who in April bragged about the “pay-attention factor” Pawlenty would bring to the November ticket, now must spend state party money on Johnson and share data with his campaign because of the endorsement.