It's time to wave our hankies at the legions of disappointed right-wing Minnesota bloggers. Tim Pawlenty's lack of any distinguishing political characteristics (like, say, "courage" or "convictions") finally caught up with him. Perhaps he shouldn't have cut the mullet so soon.
How is a Minnesota DFLer to react? It's fair to say that two more years of Pawlenty, however painful, is better than two years of Lt. Gov. Carol Molnau. Her serial incompetence as Transportation Commissioner and borderline corruption while in the Legislature would leave us pining for Tim's simple lack of principles. While I would have been morbidly curious to see how far down Molnau could take us, it's better not to go down that sewer.
But then, the hype about Pawlenty was always overrated. He won re-election here by only the narrowest of margins, and certainly couldn't have delivered Minnesota to the GOP. He has no particular legacy to highlight or ideological tendency to cater to. And, most importantly, no one knows (or really cares) who he is.
John "Keating Five" McCain's ballyhooed "integrity and honesty" is the only reason that anyone expected this political chameleon to get the Number 2 slot. "Pawlenty's been with McCain from Day 1, and McCain sticks with his friends through thick and thin," said the punditocracy.
Well, Pawlenty found out today what a good chunk of the country has been sadly seeing over the last several months.
As ye sow, so shall ye reap. Pawlenty has been a shallow governor, and I can only feel the shallowest of sympathy for his "bruised feelings" at being "strung out" by McCain.
Now all Pawlenty has to do is account for the time he's been playing politics for McCain (and taking many "official gubernatorial trips" to decidedly non-Midwestern states on the state's dime). I'd like my money back, Tim.