Tim Pawlenty has now officially dropped out of the presidential race, to no-one’s big surprise. The only surprise is that it came so quick.

Like I wrote in my last post, he paid the price.

I will write more about this later. I’m just glad populism and “chicken in every pot”-rhetoric didn’t pay off this time. Tim Pawlenty dropping out is a victory for rational, realistic conservatism.

Update: I just found out I had received an email from Tim Pawlenty himself yesterday (yes, I’m on his email list even though I don’t support him).

“Hello Friends –

I want to congratulate Congresswoman Bachmann on her victory in today’s straw poll. I’m also very proud of the work my campaign has done, and I appreciate their hard work. As I’ve said all along, we needed to show progress to do well, and we did just that. This is a long process to restore America — we are just beginning, and I’m eager for the campaign.

I’m encouraged by our progress, and I’m so thankful for the thousands of Iowans who showed their support for my candidacy by voting for me in Ames. Don’t miss my remarks at the straw poll earlier today including our latest video.

We are now moving onto the next phase of our campaign. Over the coming weeks we will be visiting New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida while continuing to grow our already strong ground game in Iowa.

Mary and I will never forget your continued support, words of encouragement, and friendship. But we need YOUR help to take the message that resonated in Iowa to the rest of the country. Can I count on you for a special “Victory Contribution” of $25, $50, $100 or even $250, to commemorate our strong showing in Ames?

We’ve completed an important first step on the road to the Republican nomination and, ultimately, the White House.  We can’t do it alone, and I need your support to continue the journey.

Tim Pawlenty”

Of course, this email could be just an example of blatant lying and spinning. However, I am tempted to believe that Pawlenty was offered something by some other candidate, like a position in a future government, and that’s why he decided to drop out so quickly. He could have easily kept going for a while, just to see if something would change, what would happen to his poll numbers. He could have hoped for one or more of his opponents to implode. But he didn’t.

He has ruled out a VP run. Then on the other hand, if he didn’t rule out a VP run, wouldn’t everyone jump to the conclusion that he was dropping out because he had been offered the VP spot?

I’ve heard rumours of a Perry-Palin-Giuliani alliance, the idea being that Perry is a good friend of both Giuliani and Palin and so he could get their endorsements. If he could unite the Tea Party and the moderate North East Republicans, he would easily win the nomination. Could it be that he just added Tim Pawlenty to this alliance?

Finally, I feel sorry for all of those who donated a “victory contribution” to commemorate Pawlenty’s strong showing in Ames. If I were one of them, I’d ask for a refund.

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