Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty perplexed political pundits a few weeks ago when he attacked political rival Mitt Romney for passing “Obamneycare” health insurance reform, but then completely backed off the attack the next day when nose-to-nose with a smirking Romney.
I assumed Pawlenty just was off that night, or that he intentionally pulled back because he worried about being exposed as a hypocrite on that particular issue. Whatever the origins of the original retreat, I assumed that would the last such TFlaw. In fact, I expected him to be pitbull agressive to calm red meat-craving party activists who are wondering if Pawlenty is nasty enough to rhetorically dismember President Obama in face-to-face debates.
But, it looks like Governor Pawlenty has done it again, this time with his “Minnesota twin” Michelle Bachmann. Today Bloomberg reports:
Stressing his record as a chief executive, (Pawlenty) told his listeners that they should support someone who isn’t “only giving speeches and offering failed amendments.”
His comments seemed aimed at Bachmann. As a state legislator before winning her House seat in 2006, she unsuccessfully pushed to amend Minnesota’s constitution to bar legal recognition of same-sex marriage. In Congress, she has emerged as a favorite speaker at rallies sponsored by Tea Party activists and hasn’t shepherded any major legislation into law.
Pawlenty insisted to reporters after his Ames speech that he wasn’t referring to Bachmann, 55.
For some reason, Pawlenty thinks he can run for President like some kind of unmanned predator drone operator, attempting to inflict deadly damage only when at a safe distance from hand-to-hand combat. But Pawlenty’s political drone attacks will continue to get panned by macho Republican activists whose fondest wish is for Obama to be subjected to persistent shock-and-awe, not drone-and-atone.