image If Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty isn’t running for President in 2012 then he must really love this state.  Of all of the potential 2012 nominees who have visited Iowa, I believe he’s had the 2nd most visits.  Mike Huckabee has definitely been here the most because of campaigning for Bob Vander Plaats, and Newt Gingrich has been here quite often as well and coming back soon.  Ron Paul has been here a couple of times this year.

But the attention over the weekend was on Pawlenty who tore into President Barack Obama, saying in Waverly, IA that his diplomacy was sending “weak signals” as Tom Beaumont reported on Saturday:

The Republican weighing a 2012 presidential campaign pointed to the Democratic administration’s pull-back from a missile defense program in eastern Europe and its announcement that it would begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan in 2011 as shaky national security policy.

“I think it sends at best mixed signals and at worst weak or equivocal signals, and that’s not healthy,” Pawlenty said in a Des Moines Register interview after headlining a Waverly fundraiser for a GOP legislative candidate.

Pawlenty, on his first extended swing through Iowa, focused his criticism of President Barack Obama and the Democratic-controlled Congress on spending programs. He named health care legislation an example of uncontrolled spending and the bailout of the U.S. automotive industry as excessive government intervention.

But Pawlenty also cited strained relations with Israel as a sign the U.S. image around the world had slipped under Obama.

“We need to make sure there’s no confusion on where we stand, what we stand for and who we stand with,” Pawlenty said at the Waverly fundraiser. “And there are terrible examples of this administration and our national leadership sending messages of equivocation when it comes to our best friends and allies.”

In Dubuque, IA his advice to the crowd gathered was to get a new president (listen to his remarks in the audio player above).  In an interview with Radio Iowa he touted his experience and pointed out that many of the problems that the Obama administration has had is due to his lack of experience:

During an interview with Radio Iowa as he traveled from one event to another, Pawlenty declined to directly compare his executive experience with potential 2012 competitor Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, but Pawlenty did contrast his time governing a state of five million with President Obama’s performance governing a nation of more than 300 million.

“If you’re going to run something large and complex, it helps to have run something large and complex previously,” Pawlenty said of Obama, who was an Illinois state senator, then a U.S. Senator for two years before his election as president in 2008. “I think, candidly, one of President Obama’s short-comings, now that he’s managing the crisis, for example, in the Gulf is he doesn’t have any sort of experience or perspective to fall back on because he’s never led a large organization.”

Pawlenty is certainly positioning himself well in Iowa should he choose to run.  He registered his Freedom First PAC in Iowa, he’s campaigning for legislative candidates in Iowa, and he’s generally likeable.  He will be competitive in the Iowa Caucus.

This is what presidential candidates need to do if they want to be competitive in Iowa.  It will be interesting to see who else will step up.  Rick Santorum has been here recently.  I mentioned above that Newt Gingrich has made numerous visits.  Haven’t seen Mike Huckabee here after Bob Vander Plaats lost his gubernatorial primary bid, but he will still be a strong contender.  I believe Mitt Romney has registered a PAC here as well, but hasn’t visited much.  I still don’t see him winning here.  Ron Paul looks to have great organization here in Iowa again with Campaign for Liberty.  It will be interesting to see if Sarah Palin will make another visit here soon.  She hasn’t been here since her book signing event in Sioux City.

While 2010 is the focus, it is becoming quite clear that the race for 2012 is well underway.  Pretty soon we’ll be tripping on presidential candidates out here, one of the blessings of living here.

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  1. Pawlenty just sounds like more too far right Republican warmongering politics as usual to me.

    Google Ron Paul, Youtube Ron Paul! Learn what Ron Paul says himself instead of what his unconstitutional warmongering, tax wasting, liberty and Bill of Rights killing opponents say about him.

    No other candidate has the record, experience and the standards of Ron Paul. He weighs everything he does by the Constitution and no matter how popular a piece of legislation may be, he will not vote for it unless he believes it’s legal according to the Constitution and that the Constitution gives the federal government the authority to govern that issue.

    The man is a medical Dr. and yet he knows more about the Constitution, financial matters, both domestic and foreign policy and political history than anyone in the federal government that I know of.

    Ron Paul has NEVER voted to raise taxes, NEVER voted for an unbalanced budget, NEVER voted for a restriction on gun ownership, NEVER taken a government paid junket, NEVER voted to increase the power of the executive branch. He voted AGAINST the so called Patriot Act. He voted AGAINST regulating the internet. He voted AGAINST the war in Iraq. He does not participate in the lucrative congressional pension program. He returns a portion of his annual congressional office budget to the U.S. Treasury EVERY YEAR.

    There is a reason they call him “ Dr. No” in Congress, he won’t go along with the unconstitutional waste, loss of rights and freedoms, nation building, unconstitutional wars and host of other actions that are contrary to the will of the people, yet supported by the majority in the federal government.

    Wake up if you haven’t already! Stop worrying about what party a person belongs to and start looking at the person. Judge them by the fruit they produce not just their words. RON PAUL IN 2012 OR SOONER!

    1. I don’t think its warmongering to desire strong national security. Not bashing Dr. Paul, but don’t agree entirely with his international policies. We had good reason to be in Afghanistan, remember 9-11? I can see an argument against Iraq, but only in hindsight with no WMD found.

      I just can’t see him as President. I do want somebody who will work to reign in the federal government, cut spending and work on the debt. Somebody like him on fiscal issues/limited government, but not him.

      1. I’d love to know how us being in Afghanistan equates to having a strong national defense. We are no safer now than we were before hand. Dont get me wrong I’m not opposed to our invation of Afghanistan. But lets call it what it was: retaliation. It did not further our domestic security objectives. And going into Iraq was a bad idea from the get-go, not just in hindsight.

      2. Shane Vander Hart.
        Dr. Paul’s Constitutional response to 911 was to suggest the issue of Letters of Marque and Reprisal. This would have saved the lives of many US troops that have died in Afghanistan and Iraq and billions of tax dollars. We have killed literally hundreds of thousands of people in those countries that had absolutely nothing to do with 911. Like Dr. Paul says, “how would we react if those countries invaded us?” We should have targeted those guilty for 911 and either killed them or tried them in court and executed them if found guilty. Once we had them cornered it would have been their choice to either be taken into custody and tried or die fighting. This would not have completely eliminated the possible loss of innocent life but it would have drastically reduced it and it would have served to lessen the unnecessary hatred for us in those countries. If the actual government in those countries took the side of the terrorists and refused to help us bring them to justice, we would have had a just reason for Congress to Constitutionally declare war instead of the president acting like a tyrant dictator and getting us involved in the mess we are in. How can you even call these wars? We have no nation that we are trying to defeat. Such actions are unwinnable. We proved that in Korea, Vietnam and countless other unconstitutional wars our presidents have involved us in. “One alternative to U.S. military action against terrorists who have attacked the U.S. and other countries and are threatening further attacks, is to enact Letters of Marque and Reprisal. Article I, Section 8, paragraph 11 of the U.S. Constitution authorizes Congress to “grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water.” I’m glad you agree with Ron Paul on so many issues but who else do you know of that you would rather see in the White house? I’ve been looking at the possible candidates and I see absolutely no one that would do a better job. We know where Ron Paul stands, we know he can’t be bought and we have a long perfect voting record that proves he will not waiver. How long has it been since you had a president you could count on and really be proud to have represent you?

      3. Shane,

        If you want someone who is fiscally responsible…

        Reality Check: Pawlenty’s Proposed Spending Cap…

        Governor Tim Pawlenty is proposing tough new budget standards. However, they are standards he has failed to meet himself since taking office in 2004. He has proposed budgets that far exceed the amount of money the state had to pay for it…

        FACT Check: The governor himself proposed budgets that cost a total of $7.3 billion more than the state took in the previous two years.

        In 2004, he proposed $2.9 billion more.

        In 2006, he proposed $1 billion more.

        In 2008, he proposed $2.2 billion more.

        Lastly, in 2010, he proposed $1.2 billion more.

        The one area this country needs help in is the “economy”!

    2. I would much rather have a constitutionalist than someone who runs government by his or her belly button. Having said that, I do not worship the constitution. Ron Paul has taken the wrong positions on abortion, the family, and Terri Schiavo.

      I never saw a more morally bankrupt and wrong-headed answer to a question on human life than the Ron Paul ost about Schiavo below. He equivocatees, he fudges, he passes blame, but he never said what could have been done to save Terri Schiavo but throw up his hands and say the constitution made me do it. Would he say the same thing if it was his own daughter?. AT one point he claimed that the case had something to do with the cost of health care, but that case had ZERO to do with that. The family would have gladly paid for her care out of their own life savings. She also had insurance, and a lawsuit settlement that would have paid for her care had her adulterous husband not chosen to kill her instead of divorcing her. Ron Paul? No, thanks.

      1. So you are suggesting that in the Schiavo case it shouldn’t have been a family decision? Thats absurd. The government has no place in these matters. But since they did stick their nose in it and ruled out private care it DID become about cost. And regardless of Ron Paul’s personal views on abortion, which i disagree with, his view of what the federal governments role on the issue should be is correct. To rule out a politician based on one or two issues when they are right about everything else is ignorant.

      2. You either didn’t know the Schiavo situation or you have misread Paul. The family a had disagreement. The husband wanted to murder his wife. The father and mother were willing to take persona responsibility for her and let her live. The courts (all the way up to the Supreme Court)sided with the husband.

        You are the one who is naive or absurd. What did you expect the parents to do, have a shoot-out with the husband on main street? Of course, the government had to get involved.

        I am concerned what side the physician Paul would have sided on if one family wanted its loved one to die and the other threatened to go to the courts. I am not confident he would oppose the family members who want to kill their loved ones.

      3. She chose to marry her husband and in doing so give him the right to make that decision. And frankly its probably the decision she would have preferred. I dont know one person who would choose to lay in a bed for 15 years in a vegetative state rather than die. So what if the husband wanted to keep her alive and the parents wanted to allow her to die. would still have sided with the parents? People letting their emotions get in the way of rational thought is has got this country in a place were no one respects personal rights or the rule of law.

      4. Larry, I am sorry you have come down on the side of murdering one’s family member. No one gives the right to a spouse to kill them. Such a right does not exist. The unalienable right is to life, not to death. Presumption that people don’t want to suffer has been the wedge that has driven many cultures to mass murder.

      5. You are wrong sir. If I put in my living will that I don’t wish to be on life support then my wife has the authority to make that happen. Just as she has the right to enforce the “do not resuscitate” order. Just because you don’t want people to have that choice doesn’t make it disappear. And yes, it absolutely is my right to decide that I don’t want to be brought back to life or kept alive artificially. And it’s my wife’s responsibility to enforce that. Thats the problem with you bible bangers. You want to force everyone to live like you. If you would like to live on life support for 20 years then by all means tell your wife to make it happen but stay out of everyone elses business.

      6. Your scenario is nothing like the Schiavo case. She was not on life support. She was on a feeding tube which was inserted soley for the convenience of the nursing staff. Terri had signed no paper expressing a desire to be killed. Your presumption that people would want to die is just that: a presumption. Once Michael Schiavo shacked up with and had children by another woman he should have had no say in the care of his “wife”.

      7. I think you need to go back and re-read the article you linked. Ron Paul is promoting the government not being involved in these matters, especially at the federal level. He is and always has been pro-life and pro-family but he does not think the federal government should be involved in the abortion issue or anything else that the Constitution does not give power to the federal government to govern. He never said the Schiavo case had something to do with the cost of care. He said if we let government take over healthcare all decisions will be made on the issue of cost and by a computer rather than a patient, family and their Dr. This is one of the problems I see often with many who take the wrong side when it comes to Ron Paul. He just voted against a bill to ban “crush videos” at the federal level. He’s not against cruelty to animals, he’s against the federal government exercising power not granted to it by the Constitution. I have seen a few votes and positions Ron Paul has taken since I really started paying attention to him that when I first read them made me think he was completely wrong but in EVERY case, once I took the time to learn why he voted or took the position he did I have had to agree with him and admit he was right and I was wrong. No one should “worship the Constitution” but it is the best governing document ever put together by any nation in history. One of the best features of it is strictly limiting the federal powers to 17 specific items and leaving all other issues to the states or the people. Ron Paul governs accordingly and he should be respected highly for that. He deserves to be in the White House more than anyone I have ever known of in my long life. I will vote for this man in 2012 even if I have to write in his name.

    3. Ron Paul is the only candidate that can help us. Both parties are so corrupt and the only people that lose are the taxpayers. Ron Paul voted against the bailouts for the big banks and auto manufacturers. He could not be more correct in his assessment of the Fed’s unaccountability to the people, and the idea that the printing press is a complex form of fraud. Our real long term hindrance to prosperity will be the federal reserve.

      Many have been duped into thinking that it is the responsibility of the government to act as a, “safety net” so to speak; this could be not farther from the truth. We need to end the welfare state and reduce the incentive for illegal immigrants to come here. Ron Paul WILL clean up the border, and is not in favor of amnesty. Ron Paul would never take action against your RIGHT to own a gun.

      Ron Paul’s voting record is glaring testimony to his stances on the governing power of the federal government, and his views on monetary policy have been spot on in predicting our current recession. I hold without reservation that Ron Paul could be a game changer for young conservatives in this country. Ron Paul is an advocate of freedom, and the prosperity of the individual. YOUNG PEOPLE PLEASE WAKEUP AND DO YOUR RESEARCH. THIS IS OUR LIVES. SOCIALISM=SLAVERY.

  2. Shane, you just don’t get it . “Somebody like him, but not him” You’re kidding right?

    Ron Paul is the only hope for this country.

    1. Celeste, I don’t hope in ANY politician. The only hope for our nation is Jesus Christ.

      Put down the kool aid, back away, get your priorities right. He’s just a man, and a fallible one at that.

      1. How ironic that you would say the only hope for this country is Jesus Christ and then tell someone else to put down the kool aid in the very next sentence.

      2. Only ironic to you. Since I do believe in Jesus Christ, putting my hope in the Son of God who is King of Kings and Lord of Lords makes far more sense than putting my hope in an ob/gyn turned Congressman from Texas.

      3. I’m a Christian and so is Ron Paul. Unfortunately Jesus is not going to be on the ballot. It is our duty as Christians to elect people that hold Christian values by their actions not by their words like Obama who claims to be a Christian, yet publicly mocks the Bible. Now all that being said, I agree 100% in the true meaning of the separation of Church and State and the right of everyone to worship as they see fit as long as they do not infringe on the rights of others to do so, such as Islamic terrorists, who believe it is their duty to kill everyone that does not accept their religion. Do you know of any Christian politician that votes accordingly as much as Ron Paul, yet NEVER votes for legislation that infringes on other peoples right to peacefully worship as they see fit? No one is suggesting you should worship Ron Paul or that he is perfect but his voting record is perfect if you believe in Constitutionally limited government, free trade and fiscal responsibility. This man has a long public history and there is not even a hint of scandal associated with him. RON PAUL IN 2012 OR SOONER!

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