September 8th, 2009
05:22 PM ET
9 years ago

Pawlenty to campaign in Virginia on Wednesday

Pawlenty to campaign in Virginia on Wednesday.

Pawlenty to campaign in Virginia on Wednesday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's political road show continues on Wednesday, when the potential 2012 presidential candidate travels to Virginia to campaign for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell.

Last week, Pawlenty campaigned with Republican Chris Christie in New Jersey, the only other state with a governor's race this year.

Pawlenty will host a fundraiser before appearing with McDonnell at a joint press conference in Richmond, his campaign said Tuesday. He'll then travel solo to Fredericksburg and Alexandria to stump for the former state attorney general.

The two men met previously through the Republican Governors Association, but tomorrow's trip will mark the first time Pawlenty has campaigned in Virginia since announcing he would not seek a third term as Minnesota governor.

Pawlenty becomes the latest national figure to campaign for McDonnell, and one of several possible 2012 contenders lending a hand to the Virginia Republican this year. Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee - two veterans of the 2008 presidential campaign - have both campaigned with, and raised money for, McDonnell.

Pawlenty told CNN's John King on Sunday that his national travels are simply part of his duties as RGA vice-chairman.

"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," he said. "I believe that's an important opportunity and responsibility."

McDonnell's controversial 1989 master's thesis - in which he criticized homosexuality and called working women "detrimental" to families - have overshadowed the race over the last week, and his 20-year-old writings have not gone unnoticed in Pawlenty's home state.

Two progressive groups in Minnesota - "The Minnesota Progressive Project" and "Alliance for a Better Minnesota" - have called on Pawlenty to cancel his trip and distance himself from McDonnell's views.

"If Tim Pawlenty even cares anymore what his home state thinks of reactionary ideologues with attitudes like McDonnell's, he would immediately cancel this appearance," The Minnesota Progressive Project wrote in a blog post last week about "Pawlenty and extremist McDonnell."

Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Chris Christie • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. jfs Memhis, Tn

    ISN'T this the guy who instructed his school districts NOT TO ALLOW THE BROADCASTING OF THE OBAMA BACK TO SCHOOL SPEECH ?? ISN"T THIS THE GUY WHO'S STATE OVERWHELMINGLY WENT TO OBAMA LAST NOV. ??? Good choice GOP.... he should help immensely .

    September 8, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  2. the GOP are Racists!

    PAwlenty can give it up....he will never be President!

    September 8, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  3. Lindie

    Seniors in this country better take a hard look at the Republicans......they have all this talk about Obama trying to ruin your Health Care when in fact last year these Republicans are the one that want to do away with your MEDICARE........they don't want a Government run Health Care System.......well what do you think MEDICARE is and they want to do away with the ones that are trying to SCARE you about Obama is the GOP they can eventually take away your Medicare. This is also the Party that wants to do away with Social Security and let everyone put their own money into 401Ks and save their own money for think long and hard before you vote for the GOP......... they will hang you out to dry when the time comes.......because they don't care about anyone but the Rich, Powerful, and hell with you people that have one foot in the grave.......

    September 8, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  4. Jon

    Who needs a governor in Minnesota when we've got this clown traveling around the country running for president? He should have quit early like Palin.

    September 8, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  5. Kate in SW Fla

    Pawlenty is fairly moderate, and he will try to paint McDonnell the same way. Fact is though, he isn't. He is a right wing religious fanatic who wants to push his religion off on everyone else. No thanks.

    September 8, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  6. mk

    This man is not running for office I tell you. Right. Once again, he thinks because his name came up a year ago that now is his time, what a loser.

    September 8, 2009 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  7. Jake

    did he enjoy Obama's socialist speech to school children, today? this is just another dangerous Republican who spouts off without knowing the facts did get all the idiots riled up!

    September 8, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  8. GOPer

    Mr. "taxation without representation / no inspiring kids at school fringe" Pawlenty is the perfect campaigner for far-right McDonnell and his antiquated nonsense against working women.

    The Grand Old Party needs to go the way of Whigs once and for all.

    September 8, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  9. Joe Terrogano

    As long as the Republicans keep fielding these guys as candidates, I can sleep soundly at night.

    September 8, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  10. T'SAH from Virginia

    WHY????? WHERE?? I betcha it's one of those far WEST SIDE sections of Virginia – those SMALL POCKETS where REAL AMERICANS are!!! Oh No! I am wrong – it's RICHMOND – ALEXANDRIA and FREDERICKSBURG – okay, he's trying to REACH the areas where REPUBLI-CAN'Ts – I guess he figures he has those small pockets where REAL AMERICANS live in his back pocket!!!

    Don't waste your time – THIS STATE WILL REMAIN BLUE!!!!!!!!

    September 8, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  11. Pel

    Let him. Va will stay demo. The repug for gov will be defeated.

    September 8, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  12. DS

    Governor "No New Taxes" Pawlenty is more conservative than he is given credit for. For the last couple of years, the MN legislature here has ground to a halt in part because of "No New Taxes" Pawlenty. He has, however, been willing to raise "fees" but nooooo, that's not taxes. He's been a disgrace to the State of MN. Yuck.

    September 8, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  13. Steph

    After his premature commentary on the President's "socialist" speech to children, he can kiss his presidential aspirations good bye!

    September 8, 2009 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  14. patrick

    why? this man wouldn't get re elected in his own state.

    September 8, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  15. MNgirl

    What's with all the coverage of Pawlenty all of a sudden? What's he done to score this kind of press for his every statement and appearance? He's not very impressive, and there's a lot of other officials saying and doing the same things. So why all the coverage of Pawlenty? How about you focus on more impressive govt officials. (And how about you stop calling Obama's speech to children 'controversial' since it's only complainers like Pawlenty who spoke out about it.)

    September 8, 2009 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  16. Big Ed

    What a Dork! He is a "nothing to offer" from the "Party of No!" Go home (if they will still have you)!

    September 8, 2009 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  17. D. D.

    This is the man to watch for the GOP.

    September 8, 2009 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  18. Ambrose Smith, Borrego Springs, California

    Pawlenty still stinging for being passed over by McCain in favor of THE QUITTER.

    Pawlenty was loyal to McCain but McCain sold out.

    September 8, 2009 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  19. Cynthia - Arkansas

    Isn't it too early to being sending in the clowns? Give it a rest of at least 3 years, PLEASE. After his crazy talk about President Obama's speech today, I wouldn't show my face if I were him. What an idiot!

    September 8, 2009 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  20. Reagan was wrong

    Ah yes, the new face of the GOP for 2012: another white guy shilling for big corporations while pandering to the neanderthal base.

    September 8, 2009 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  21. cspurgeon

    Pawlenty is a done goose. Doesn't stan a prayer for the nomination now that he joined the wacko crowd. UGH<<

    September 8, 2009 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  22. victim of republican greed

    If citizens of VA were smart, they would stay home and not listen to the glamor boy of right wingnuts.

    September 8, 2009 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  23. Simmy

    Pawlenty is looking goofier by the minute....He must be taking lessons from Huckabee.....On the Palin dinner thing......Can I just take the money? Thank you....

    September 8, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  24. Failin' Bailin' Quittin' Palin, How Does Your Ignorance Grow?

    Stay away ... Stay far, far away. You're not man enough or principled enough to cross the border into the commonwealth. Stay in Minnesota and do your job better than you have in the past. A mediocre record as governor with less than 50% of the vote is nothing to brag about outside of your state, halfwit.

    September 8, 2009 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  25. lilalove

    He looks like a fool now.. the way he went after Obama on his education speech.

    September 8, 2009 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
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