(CNN) – Tim Pawlenty, the former Minnesota governor and 2012 Republican presidential candidate, was named Thursday as president and CEO of the Financial Services Roundtable, a Washington-based lobbying group.
Pawlenty will step down as a national co-chairman of Mitt Romney's presidential campaign to assume the new role, which will formally begin November 1.
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"Tim's leadership, vision and ability to find common ground make him the right choice to represent the broad membership of The Financial Services Roundtable," Tom Wilson, CEO of Allstate and chairman of The Financial Services Roundtable, wrote in a statement
"Tim knows this and is able to create win-win solutions to difficult issues," he added. "He is exactly the kind of leader we need to continue to improve our industry's reputation, advocate firm-but-fair regulation and help maintain our global leadership of the financial markets."
Pawlenty served as Minnesota's governor from 2003-2011, and before that served in the state's legislature. He made a brief bid for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, dropping out in August 2011 and backing Mitt Romney. He became a frequent Romney surrogate and was considered a top contender to become Romney's running mate, though that honor eventually went to Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.
"My time in public service was rewarding and focused on achieving results," Pawlenty said in a statement. "I am grateful to have had the opportunity to serve, but I am now moving on and committed to focusing fully on this new opportunity."
In a separate statement, released by Romney's campaign, Pawlenty said he was still fully supportive of the GOP nominee.
"It is an honor to call Mitt and Ann my friends," Pawlenty wrote. "My new position as CEO of The Financial Services Roundtable does not allow me to participate in partisan campaign activities. For that reason, I am stepping down from my position as co-chair of Mitt Romney's presidential campaign. My work with Mitt has been a privilege. Mitt Romney is a truly good man and great leader. As the campaign moves into the home stretch, he has my full support and continued faith in his vision and his policies."
Romney also called Pawlenty a friend, writing his former rival "brought energy, intelligence and tireless dedication to every enterprise in which he's ever been engaged, and that certainly includes my presidential campaign.
"While I regret he cannot continue as co-chair of my campaign, his new position advancing the integrity of our financial system is vital to the future of our country," Romney added. "I congratulate him on his new position and wish him every success in carrying out his new mission."
I guess he can see that his candidate is not doing well, and his shot at Secretary of Bridges in the Mittens cabinet may not come to fruition.
From governor to being a lobbyist. Go figure. THIS is part of what's wrong with politics.
Pawlenty will step down as a national co-chairman of Mitt Romney's presidential campaign to assume the new role, which will formally begin November 1
Swim, rat, swim!!
Pawlenty is bailing on Romney. Let's face it, it is not as if Robmey's campaign is keeping Pawlenty so busy that he can't juggle both positions until November 6th.
The truth is that just like Lyin' Ryanis hedging his bets and running for congress, Pawlenty is moving on now rather than later.
Robmey has turned out to be the poorly executed punchline of a terrible Republican joke.
No one is laughing, and folks are leaving in the middle of the show.
Obama 2012. Period.
T-Paw as a lobbyist, huh? Gonna be kind of hard for a Republican Lobbyist when they lose control of the House this year.
Another corporatist comes out of the closet.
Pawlenty tried hard to get some place if Romney get elected and was cursing OBAMA very hard. Now he seems desperate and move to some other place. Good move but very sad.
Ah...the marriage of politics and lobbyists.....and people wonder what is wrong with DC. Paul Ryan's wife is a lobbyist, Justice Thomas' wife is a lobbyist and now this tool. Don't be surprised if you see a report in the future saying Mitt was a lobbyist. lol
Right. The politicians never leave Washington.......they simply go to political party backed concerns, whether lobbyists, think tanks, or whatever you want to call them, they are simply highly paid jobs for the wealthy, in politics.
Obama should be railing against HIMSELF........he IS the WEALTHY!
Wait, who? Is this the guy w/ the mullet?
Pawlenty believes Romney will lose, which means Pawlenty will not get a cabinet slot.
Obviously he knows there will be no Romney administration, so why wait?
Tim Pawlenty: The first of many to desert a sinking ship.
Looks better on a resume to say, "CEO of the Financial Services Roundtable" than "Co-chair of a Loser's Campaign". Good move, T-paw.
He regrets that Romney won't win 'cuz that means he'll never get that cabinet post he was promised so he could live off of the government. The timing of his resignation is suspect.
I guess the rats start leaving the sinking ship...
Now that he's a lobbyist, maybe Obama will hire him! He's hired plenty of lobbyists already! Oh, that goes against a campaign promise? Oh, promises, sromises... That doesnt mean anything to Obama!
Rats deserting a sinking ship....watch for more.
It seems more likely that Tim was hired by this lobby firm for his political connections rather than for his economic abilities.....
Pawlenty came to realize that Mitt Romney's campaign is nothing but a train wreck in double slow motion and got out while the getting was good.
Pawlenty is not going to go down with a sinking ship.
I heard there was a shortage of republican lobbyists in DC, so Little Timmy will fill that republican void.
He'll tank your budget. Pawlenty left MN in fiscal shambles.
Tim knows the ship is sinking and he is jumping off the floundering USS Romney. When the lifesavers jump ship you know you have a problem.
If Pawlenty thought Romney was going to win, he'd stick with him till the end and take a cabinet post.....this is a rat desserting the sinking ship.
Rats leaving a sinking ship comes to mind...