September 6th, 2009
11:20 PM ET
5 years ago

I don't view Palin as a competitor for anything, says Pawlenty

Gov. Pawlenty said Sunday that he views former Gov. Palin as a teammate rather than a competitor and that he didn't think Sen. McCain made a mistake in selecting Palin as his 2008 running mate.
Gov. Pawlenty said Sunday that he views former Gov. Palin as a teammate rather than a competitor and that he didn't think Sen. McCain made a mistake in selecting Palin as his 2008 running mate.

(CNN) – Minnesota’s Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who is widely considered to be a likely contender for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, said Sunday that he does not view himself as being in competition with his party’s most recent vice presidential nominee, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Asked about his own 2012 plans, Pawlenty was coy and judicious, suggesting that his recent travels to many states likely to be important in the next White House race were because of his duties as the vice chair of the Republican Governors Association.

“Part of my responsibility,” Pawlenty told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King on Sunday’s State of the Union, “is to travel the country when appropriate, as time allows, to help Republican candidates for governor get elected or re elected. So that’s part of it. And, as time allows, I’m going to speak to issues that I think my party needs to improve on – both here in Minnesota and nationally. I believe that’s an important opportunity and responsibility.”

But Pawlenty was clear that he does not view himself as competing with former Gov. Palin.

The former Alaska governor is “a friend,” Pawlenty told King, “I don’t view her as somebody who’s a competitor for anything. I view her as a teammate.”

Pressed on his view of himself relative to Palin, Pawlenty reiterated, “I view her as a friend. And I think she’s somebody who has been a remarkable leader in Alaska under difficult circumstances. I don’t know what the future holds for her.”

Pawlenty also appeared to hold no ill will over Sen. John McCain’s reported decision to pick Gov. Palin over Gov. Pawlenty for the vice presidential nod on last year’s Republican ticket.

“I’m a huge fan of Sen. McCain. I think he made the choice he felt was right for not only his ticket but for the country in the circumstances of the time,” said Pawlenty. The Minnesota Republican added that he did not think McCain made a mistake in choosing Palin as his running mate.


Filed under: Extra • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin • State of the Union • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (137 Responses)
  1. Ernesto

    I view both of these nuts as GOP-Light. They couldn't possible be considered seriously for national office. You betcha!

    September 6, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  2. J.C. - Independent & Insured

    Governor Pawlenty got one point from me. Any politician that can tell stories like Palin did is no competitor.

    September 6, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  3. Yea right!!

    Palin is money hungry. Can u blame her? I certainly can't. If by some miracle she is allowed to be anywhere near Washington for anything. The "old boys" will run her like water. She should be a none story. She is being used to arouse the back woods nuts. I hope Americans can see what is happening. Unforturnately, we are suffering from economic & health care issues & all the repubs want to do is bash the President instead of trying to help. A talk to school children about the importance of education and not dropping out, Pleassssssssssssssssse!!!!!!!!! This is definitely a conspiracy against our President. How sad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 6, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  4. sue

    its too early guys to start fighting over 2012. instead of helping the president move this country forward, you are all smearing and spreding hate and racism like wildfire. this country has turned into a third world or something. if every president, democrat or republican is treated like this, the country will get stuck on stupid and china ofcourse and other countries watching will surpass the u.s. republicans have to stop this stupidity, putting themselves infront of millions of americans who voted for reform. we were tired of your hatred, pure racism, aggresiveness, dictatorship and thats why you are a minority. continue to beleive the polls, all of a sudden even the conservatives are now independents so they can fool the polls. in 2010 we shall see who is the fool. we want all of you out. you are not helping the country, nor are you helping me. sick and tired citizen.

    September 6, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  5. Perusing-through

    IF PAWLENTY WAS A HONEST MAN WITH A BACKBONE . . .
    He would say that he is not worried about Palin because she is a nut-job who clearly lost the race for McCain. Anyone with a half-a-brain (not to include far-right "Birthers" and "Death Panel" wing-nuts), know that after Sarah's initial burst onto national scene; she became the biggest bust since the Ford Edsel. And worst yet, while obliterating McCain's campaign, she simultaneously sabotage McCain's chance by secretly asking donors to funnel campaign funds away from McCain's campaign and into her 2012 coffer.

    September 6, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. J.C. - Independent & Insured

    Governor Pawlenty is right again. "With trigger, Dems will shoot themselves in the foot."

    If the voters voted Dems into Congress, why are Dems afraid to lead?
    Didn't we just wasted our votes?

    I appreciate Pawlenty's honest response, which made Senators Nelson and Olympia Snow look like fools.

    Why are Dems so afraid of acting like Dems?
    Perhaps you should join me as Independents and support President Obama's Public Option.

    September 6, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  7. Ken in NC

    While I am not a Pawlenty supporter, I would not put a man of his stature in the same class with Sarah Palin. This man is a sitting Governor and she is a proven quitter.

    September 6, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  8. Tom in New Hope, MN

    American voters lookout for Tim Pawlenty. Pawlenty is as devious as the day is long. He is still employeed by the citizens of Minnesota but he is rarely here to do his job. We don't have tax increases. In Pawlenty's terms we now have fees. He wants to take what others have created, use it as long as possible and do nothing to keep it functional – the 35W bridge collapse is a good example. He is a man of inaction. Beware of Tim Pawlenty.

    September 6, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  9. Joe MN

    Anyone that wants pawlenty can have him. He has been a disaster for this state, and I would love to get rid of him. No taxes to support government services, but plenty of new taxes to build sporting stadiums – great priorities.

    He spends all his time on trips outside the state, and many times outside the country. Here's a news flash – we don't need to outsource any more jobs or take in any more somali terrorists (thank's for bringing them to our state)

    Maybe it should be the joint Pawlenty/Bachmann ticket – two crazy loons for the price of one. (sorry .. didn't mean to insult our state bird)

    September 6, 2009 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  10. Loose Cannon Liberal

    Whoever they choose I hope the plan is to offer a plan vs. spending billions of dollars trying to destroy people who are at least trying to do something. If we do not find a way to compromise and develop bi-partisan legislation, the future for our kids is doomed. Palin is not the answer for sure, my prayers are an independent party will somehow emerge so we have at least one real choice. Career politicans make me sick and sadly, my feelings are not unique, outside the 20% of the political lunatics out there, the rest of America wishes these phonies would just disappear

    September 6, 2009 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  11. Obama supporter

    I hardly think Palin is going anywhere, too much of a flake.

    September 6, 2009 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  12. Jose

    Good start – avoiding the question, talking out of both sides of his mouth. Ought to be a fine candidate for the republicans.

    September 6, 2009 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  13. Hugo

    Dear Lord, please keep Sara Palin doing whatever it is she is doing to these leftists, it appears to be working. Would someone please explain why there are so many nasty posts regarding Sanfords' behavior when Bill Clinton lived his entire political existence as a Governor and President as an adulterer? Can someone on the left please explain to me how they can call for a war crimes tribunal for George Bush and Dick Cheney when Bill Clinton bombed the crap out of Serbia, Bosnia and Iraq for 8-years prior to the Bush Administration take over? Can someone on the left please explain to me how they squeal of the money Cheney made from Haliburton while the Clintons' have made multi-millions from the dealings Bill Clinton made while serving as our President? Can someone please explain to me why they would think George Bush would be negligent for 9/11 when Bill Clinton failed to act on taking out Bin Laden on numerous occasions? Would someone please explain to me why Obama wont disclose his academic records or passports when he is our Commander in Chief? Enquiring Minds want to know...

    September 6, 2009 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  14. emmie

    Moot point. Palin is a quitter and unqualified has-been. Pawlenty adds nothing and blends into the wallpaper. About as interesting and insightful as dishwater.

    September 6, 2009 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  15. CHRISEZ

    The former Alaska governor is “a friend,” Pawlenty told King, “I don’t view her as somebody who’s COMPETENT for anything." I think that's what he meant to say. Yep, it sure sounds right.

    September 6, 2009 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  16. Chuck

    C'mon Governor, tell us how you really feel about Palin. Be honest with us now rather than later. Intellectually, you know that Palin is out of her league and will always be.

    September 6, 2009 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  17. John

    The world is coming to an end! A republican made a rational statement!

    September 6, 2009 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  18. JJS

    What amazes me is how I sit and read these comments and see the Dems crying foul for the right bashing their President. If I'm not mistaking you people on the left are some of the cruelest people that I know. You people did nothing but trash George Bush, so when whine about not coming together a backing your President, GET REAL!!!! Another thing about your cruelty is when Sarah Palin came onto the seen you people were spreading trash rumors about her within hours, so maybe you people should remember when you point your finger at someone you have 3 pointing right back at you.

    September 6, 2009 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  19. Debbie Jo from Kokomo

    Tim Pawlenty is an empty suit. Jesse Ventura had better leadership skills than T-Paw.

    I am a life-long Minnesotan, and as you can see, I am not a fan of Governor Pawlenty.

    PLEASE Republicans – you can do better than this light weight. Anybody but Pawlenty!!

    September 6, 2009 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  20. Kevin

    This headline is very misleading. GOP governor "sounds off" on Palin and McCain. This sounds as if he's "going off" on them as if there is dissention amongst the replublicans. 100% not the case and once again ... any headline to draw in readers at any cost.

    September 6, 2009 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  21. JOBLESS IN IOWA

    I wouldnt vote for Palin and am sorry that I voted for McCain because neither has the people in mind, But DONT THINK that I would vote for Obama either. Obama is a joke. Obama has lied about Jobs, Obama is lieing about Health Care, Obama will raise your taxes and Obama is just anothert person who lives off government support while doing nothing for it. As I said at the begining, Obama is a JOKE.

    September 6, 2009 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  22. zack

    way to go CNN...thats probably the most misleading headline possible. im not a big palin supporter, but CNN seems to be totally out to destroy her. terrible journalistic standards.

    September 6, 2009 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  23. Badger

    Both of you are losers. See no competition.

    September 6, 2009 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  24. Ken Williams

    Ok all the hate for the Republican party is really funny. The Democrats want to blame the Republicans for the health care breakdown. Are people really stupid enough to believe that. Do the words super majority mean anything? They should; the Democratic party could vote through whatever they want but they lack the courage and convictions!

    September 6, 2009 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  25. Ginger

    Minnesotans must be ecstatic that the GOP powers that be { pawlenty, Bachman) are soon to be voted out of office. This is all due to their neurotic and arrogant Conservative behavior that has become a trademark of the fascist GOP party of today. The Conservative Movement that is running unchecked throughout this country will be their own downfall and I for one am exceeding glad to see them get their come-uppance, Good riddance!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 6, 2009 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
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