Pawlenty says he can win in 2012
Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty speaking in West Des Moines, Iowa while on tour to promote his book, “Courage to Stand” on January 30, 2011.
February 7th, 2011
10:33 PM ET
12 years ago

Pawlenty says he can win in 2012

(CNN) - Despite his socially conservative stances, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty believes he can win the presidency.

"Yes of course," Pawlenty said when asked if he could win. "If you're not willing to stand by your values, what's the point in doing it anyhow?"

The likely 2012 presidential candidate spoke in Sioux City, Iowa, on Monday as part of a lecture series sponsored by the Family Leader, a socially conservative group, in a speech threaded with his moral values.

With his wife, Mary, by his side, Pawlenty touted his belief that marriage is "between a man and woman" and his pro-life history.

"(It is) hard to have family life unless you respect life," Pawlenty said. "It says in our founding documents and in the Bible that we are to respect life, not destroy life."

In his speech, his third of the day in Iowa, he touched on nearly every major issue facing the country, including jobs, education, health care and the national debt, stressing the importance of individual responsibility.

"We need a system that says parents can be in charge," he said about education.

When talking about the "misguided" health care law, he said "We have to put individuals and families in the driver's seat."

"Can't be pro-jobs and anti-business, that's like being pro-egg and anti-chicken," Pawlenty said.

When addressing his faith, he said his words weren't those of a "politician passing through town," because this is a nation "founded under God."

"First and foremost we don't want to be a country that turns away from God, we want to be a country that turns toward God," Pawlenty said.

The former Minnesota state legislator has frequented early presidential primary and caucus states while he continues to say he'll make a final decision about a White House run in the coming months. Pawlenty was in Iowa in January to promote his new book, "Courage to Stand," which discusses his faith and its influence on his public life.

- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. GOP = Greed Over People

    I would give higher odds to the "end of days" beginning in 2012, than Timmy "Elmer Gantry" Pawlenty ever seeing the inside of the Oval Office.

    February 7, 2011 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  2. harry Jenness

    I am from Minnesota and I think it is funny that the former gov will not admit that he left Minnesota with a $6 billion debt that current legislators and new governor have to deal with. He also gave the public schools a $2 billion I ow you. Does he really think he should run for President.

    February 7, 2011 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  3. Bessy

    Pawlenty is only one, of what is it now, about 15 Republicans who are out there either saying, or indicating, that they are running in 2012 to be the next president. These republicans have some egos ! Every one of them thinks that they are presidential material. It really is getting to be a big joke and a lot of people will be laughing all the way into the voting booths.

    February 7, 2011 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  4. CFB

    My Picks:

    1) Mitch Daniels
    2) Mitt Romney
    3) Mike Huckabee
    4) Jeb Bush
    5) Tim Pawlenty
    6) Sarah Palin

    February 7, 2011 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  5. TX Democrat

    I think I could win the presidency too. So does the two nuts, Palin and Bachman . So what!!!

    February 7, 2011 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  6. J.V.Hodgson

    He disrespects the Supreme Court and the basic separation of church from state or governance. He needs to be careful when he refers to god since he clealy has no idea that God under Christian belief and Islamic belief are one and the same.Only the messengers to the believers (proletariat/people) are different.
    Great hot button speech to a bunch of christian believers and absolutely no real ideas of how to fix anything.

    February 7, 2011 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  7. Chris

    he said "You cant be pro job and anti business, thats like being pro egg but anti chicken" Obama is anti business? since when does a anti business president preside over a; a stock market roaring 45% in 2 years, private sector creating jobs while public sector jobs continue to diminish, GDP growing for 6 consecutiver quarters, corporate profits at record highs, corporations have record cash.

    On top of all that Obama has signed a total of 8 small business tax breaks into law as well as extending the tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations.. again how is Obama anti business again?! please someone explain this to me.

    February 8, 2011 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  8. Brady

    Minnesota native here. We had to put up with this guy for 8 years while he systematically destroyed our state. DO NOT permit him to do this to the USA.

    February 8, 2011 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  9. duke

    He can win in 2012!
    He can win the opportunity of being the third(party of god(gop)member to drop his bid to become president in 2012.

    February 8, 2011 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  10. Bertina

    He is dreaming again. He left our state in a mess....what do you think he would do to the country???

    February 8, 2011 12:32 am at 12:32 am |
  11. AndyinATL

    Finally, someone most of the country can root for.... I can't believe CNN put "Despite his conservative social stance" in the beginning of the article. Majority of americans are socially conservative. Few loud mouths on TV and loony hollywood types are not representative of America. They are representatives of the moral decay of America. Majority of Americans believe in normal family and are pro-life.

    February 8, 2011 01:09 am at 1:09 am |
  12. thomas

    Sarah Palin says the same thing , Something tells me there both wrong !

    February 8, 2011 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  13. ThinkAgain

    Fine, stand by your name, and when you go down in flames, don't blame anyone else except your own incompetence, foolish egocentricity and fundamental lack of knowledge about our Constitution and how our country was founded on the bedrock of these freedoms: assembly, speech, press and RELIGION.

    February 8, 2011 01:42 am at 1:42 am |
  14. Gaylon Barrow

    Pawlenty you haven't a chance. Maybe as Vice President to Palin then we can reconsider. But you heading the ticket not a chance.

    February 8, 2011 02:01 am at 2:01 am |
  15. richard

    why dont you run for president of Iran....they want God to run the country too.

    February 8, 2011 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  16. Josaphat Daniels

    All these potential GOP twerps are nothing but noise making presidential wanabees romney, pawlenty, palin ,gingrinch bachmann etc. none of these doofuses even have an idea of what running for president means, it should come with real passion for serving your country and leading it into a better future. But now look at what is happening in america, anyone
    who wants to run for office nowadays do so for cheap publicity and knows absolutely nothing about public service.

    February 8, 2011 04:17 am at 4:17 am |
  17. Marry

    Never...! Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty stands for a way of thinking that has hurt the country enormously instead advancing the American people. When he talks about his believes, many would call them inconsistent, intolerant, hypocritical, simplistic, and very self-centered. Typical GOP/TP and on that level one can say consistent!

    February 8, 2011 04:36 am at 4:36 am |
  18. ib42

    Given the dumbing down of America, I'd say he's right.

    February 8, 2011 04:57 am at 4:57 am |
  19. Just like McCain saying soldiers should be teachers.....HA!!? Insane McCain all over again.

    Parents in charge of education....Look America, what about the 8 years of Republican administration didn't teach you all you needed to learn about the party of contradiction and no education? how about YOUR lack of education? and the best we can do is leave it up to YOU, same YOU that ruined our country, wow people this is fantastically dumb. You voted remember, you went to war, you do this, you did that, it wasn't ALL politicians doing it, you voted for them!!! Last thing we need is the common idiot teaching their kids. We should be light years by these problems, but alas, here we are. Maybe we can get a few more pro Nazis in America that way, yay, good thinking people. Get a life, get an education, face reality. Some are made to teach, some are made to do, some are made to just sit there and learn from those that are best for the job. End of story, grow up America. Stop going backwards. Abortion, education, war, come on, this has to be a joke.

    February 8, 2011 05:08 am at 5:08 am |
  20. mike

    I am waiting for some values from the repugs but i have not seen any yet the only thing that I hear is FEAR this FEAR that it is getting old to me

    February 8, 2011 05:12 am at 5:12 am |
  21. Jim

    In my education of writing skills the first BASIC structure was to say who,what, when, where, in this article it is never told what political affiliation Pawlenty is, GOP or Dem.

    February 8, 2011 05:17 am at 5:17 am |
  22. willie floyd

    In his dreams!!

    February 8, 2011 05:40 am at 5:40 am |

    This guy is clueless.

    February 8, 2011 06:35 am at 6:35 am |
  24. Name king

    This maniac Pauli and his talking points, they have encouraged these big corporations, to put away their money on the side lines and watch Americans suffer for over 2 years. Dem and obama took a complete meltdown of the financial markets and sacrifice half their seats in congress by making very unpopular decisions to push these finical institutions into a financial juggernauts, in the belief that these companies will turn around and help the American people survive with jobs. the onslaught political demonization from the repugs turn the shallow minded public against the dems. And big corporations seized the opportunities to outsource jobs, making more money than ever in american history leaving the American people in the dust. Every time the president ask big corporations what about the deal that have saved you from the abyss, to help the American public the repiugs jump to their defense and criticize the president saying he's anti business. Just like they are encouraging the insurance companies to raise their rates, by demonizing the policy at every turn. It is hard to fight the rich and powerful in these state when them alone have the voice and we have a very shallow minded American public, without a voice.

    February 8, 2011 06:40 am at 6:40 am |
  25. KatR

    "We need a system that says parents can be in charge," he said about education.

    That sort of attitude is what has caused the dumbing down of education in America. When I went to school in the 1950s and 60s my parents supported the teacher. Somewhere along the way it became 'cool' to question the teacher's efforts to educate and even go so far as to sue the school rather than to inspire your child to work hard and learn. Having worked for a public school district for 20 yrs I can tell you that an obscene amount of money must be allocated every year to lawyers who handle lawsuits filed by parents. What a waste.

    February 8, 2011 07:08 am at 7:08 am |
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