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Posts Tagged ‘tim pawlenty’

Behind Pawlenty’s Saying “No” To Being Romney’s Running Mate

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 24, 2012

Poor Lawrence O’Donnell. He keeps getting things wrong, in public, on national TV.

For instance, remember how he spent half of last year yammering that Tim Pawlenty was a lock for the GOP presidential nomination? Too bad, so sad.

Undeterred, O’Donnell simply switched from proclaiming Pawlenty a shoo-in for top of the GOP ticket to proclaiming him a shoo-in for the second slot on the GOP ticket. This is what LOD was saying as recently as last Thursday, when he chomped down hard on this Politico teaser: “Tim Pawlenty has jumped to the top of the vice presidential shortlist of several Mitt Romney advisers after emerging as the most effective — and well-liked – surrogate for the GOP-nominee-to-be, according to several Republicans familiar with campaign deliberations.”

O’Donnell spent that segment hammering Politico for what he called taking the word of a Pawlenty associate on this matter when in fact Pawlenty had been the front-runner for the GOP running mate slot for 223 days “and I put him there!

Wow. Ego much, Larry?

And guess what? Wrong again, cupcake: “Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (puh-LEN’-tee) says he’s told Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign to look elsewhere for a running mate.” He announced this on CBS’ Face the Nation program this morning.

So why did Pawlenty say no? There are two likely scenarios: 1) He knew Romney’s people were going to stiff him just like McCain’s did and he wanted to do a face-saving preemptive-strike move, or 2) He can read polls. I subscribe to the second scenario, and here’s why:

Remember, this is the guy whose primary reason for wanting the 2008 RNC in St. Paul was so he could appear on stage as John McCain’s running mate. He fully expected to be picked by McCain, much as Bob Dole fully expected to be picked by George Herbert Walker Bush in 1988. He wants the presidency — or the vice presidency — so much he can taste it.

Why would such a man turn down an offer to be on the 2012 Republican presidential ticket? Because he can read the polls:

See that map? Obama needs to get, at most, two more swing states to get him over the top — and if he gets Florida, only one. Romney, by contrast, needs to pick up at least five of the six swing states, one of which had better be Florida. Furthermore, the economy is doing better in most of the swing states than it is elsewhere — which is why Romney’s been telling the GOP governors of swing states to stop talking up how well they’re doing in terms of recovering from the Bush Depression.

Plus, Pawlenty’s seen this past week how well the Latino community has reacted to Obama’s end run around Republican refusal to pass the DREAM Act. That’s going to be a big issue in Florida. If he wasn’t sure before that Romney’s going to go down in flames, he’s probably sure now — and he doesn’t want his 2016 presidential-nomination résumé contaminated by being the running mate for a failed presidential candidate.

06/25/12 Update: And now we see that Michigan’s just flipped from toss-up to Leans Obama, giving him a total of 269 EVs of the 270 needed. And with the GOP-dominated SCOTUS just handing down an SB1070 ruling that preserves the worst and key part of it, Romney can kiss goodbye any hope of getting the Latino vote.

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Petters, 2008: Bachmann Pal Vennes Says He’ll Get Pardoned ‘Next Year’

Posted by Phoenix Woman on July 3, 2011

Once again, Ken Avidor comes through with the goods.

In this case, the goods involve a trial audio recording and transcript. The recording and transcript (from which the above YouTube is excerpted) document Ponzi schemer Tom Petters, in a September 8, 2008 conversation with Deanna Coleman (who he didn’t know was recording the conversation as the government had already nabbed her), saying that Frank Vennes, longtime Petters associate and friendly with Michele Bachmann, Norm Coleman and Tim Pawlenty, had told him in August 2008 that he, Tom Petters, was going down but that Vennes was “going to get a pardon next year”:

Now, why would Vetters think that? Probably because Michele Bachmann had already written to then-President Bush asking him to pardon Vetters:

KARL BREMER: Frank Vennes, Jr., was one of her largest contributors in 2006. He’s a convicted money launderer. He did time in federal prison in Sandstone Prison in northern Minnesota. And upon his release, he became involved in Tom Petters. And if you are familiar with the Petters Ponzi scheme, about a $3.5 billion Ponzi scheme that operated in Minnesota, Frank Vennes steered primarily evangelical Christian groups to invest with Tom Petters. And he became implicated in the Petters scandal in 2008. But that was after Michele Bachmann had written a recommendation for pardon for Frank Vennes. Vennes and his family and his personal lawyer have given Bachmann tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions. Vennes also contributed heavily to another Minnesota presidential candidate, Tim Pawlenty, and the state Republican Party. And Vennes got letters of recommendation from Tim Pawlenty, or recommendations for a pardon from Pawlenty, from Norm Coleman, former U.S. senator from Minnesota, and from Bachmann.

When Vennes was implicated in the Petters scandal in 2008, Bachmann withdrew her letter of support for a pardon, and she gave back a portion of the money that Vennes had donated to her campaign. Just in April of this year, Vennes was actually indicted in the Petters scandal, and he’s scheduled to go to trial later this year, which could make for an uncomfortable time for Michele Bachmann, because in her letter of support for a pardon, she indicated she had a very close personal relationship with Frank Vennes and was quite familiar with his personal finances. She has, of course, never returned my calls regarding Frank Vennes, and she’s really never explained fully her relationship with this convicted money launderer.

Vennes’ trial is set to start roundabout the time the GOP primary season begins in earnest. (By the way: Republicans are trying to deflect this scandal by pointing out that Vetters gave money to Amy Klobuchar as well as to Norm, Timmy and Michele. What they don’t point out is that, unlike Norm, Timmy and especially Michele, Amy Klobuchar didn’t work to get Vetters pardoned.)

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Arne Carlson: Pawlenty Caused Minnesota Budget Woes

Posted by Phoenix Woman on July 3, 2011

Just to remind everyone:

Carlson contends that his administration didn’t just point out the long-term structural problems in the 1995 report that Downey was referring to. Rather, it made the “reforms” necessary to correct the problems.

Carlson also contends that Tim Pawlenty, as majority leader of the House and then as governor, undid most of the changes the Carlson administration instituted. Along the way, Pawlenty got a little help from Gov. Jesse Ventura and some DFLers.

But mostly Carlson blames Pawlenty.

He says that Pawlenty closed the very department, Planning, that created the report Republicans now are citing.

He also says that Pawlenty, as House majority leader, was responsible, along with Ventura, for a disastrous change in the relationship between school funding and property taxes.

And he also says that Pawlenty showed that he wasn’t serious about budgeting because he never pushed for inflation to be considered a factor in out-year spending, only in out-year income.

[…]

Gimmicks replaced the reforms of the Carlson years, Carlson said. Tobacco settlement money was used as a one-time budget-balancing fix. School funding aid was shifted. Federal stimulus money was used.

“Under Tim Pawlenty, it became deficit heaven,” said Carlson. “All the things we did were undone. Now, what bothers me is you get these holier-than-thou attitudes. Oh, we’re all to blame. But that’s just not true. There’s one person who has the power to insist on a balanced budget. That’s the chief executive officer, the governor.”

Carlson’s words were borne out back in 2005 by Britt Robson in his excellent City Pages piece “Minnesota Eats Itself“.

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Monday Morning News Roundup

Posted by Phoenix Woman on May 23, 2011

— Earlier this year, I mentioned Bluestem Prairie’s breaking the story of a certain repeat sex offender, Jeremy Giefer, who seemed to be getting astonishingly gentle treatment from various prominent “law and order” Republicans such as Tony Cornish. Well, guess what? The Twin Cities media doesn’t seem to be much interested, but as BSP’s Sally Jo Sorensen reports, the DC-based The Politico has picked up on it:

Pawlenty’s pardon problem involves Jeremy Geifer, who had been convicted in a statutory rape case involving a 14-year-old girl he later married. Geifer had been described by everyone in his life as a model of reform, which eventually led to a 2008 pardon by a three-person board led by Pawlenty.

But late last year, Geifer was accused of sexually assaulting another underage girl more than 250 times. Pawlenty moved swiftly, asking for a probe into whether Geifer lied on his pardon application and pushing to close down a day care run by his wife.

What Politico chose not to mention: The latest alleged victim of Giefer’s is none other than his own teenage daughter, the very person he fathered off of the 14-year-old girl he married.

— Speaking of local journalists breaking stories, Karl Bremer, of the blog Ripple in Stillwater, just got one heckuvan atta-boy:

The Minnesota Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has informed me that I won a Page One Award for “Best Use of Public Records” for my series on “Minnesota and the Man Known as ‘Bobby Thompson.’” They won’t reveal whether it was 1st, 2nd or 3rd place until the annual awards banquet June 7.

‘Bobby Thompson’ is the assumed name (probably one of many) of the notorious scammer and Michele Bachmann pal behind the fake charity known as the “U.S. Navy Veterans Association”.

— Speaking of Page One Awards, City Pages’ Nick Pinto was nominated for one for his followup work on the Giefer story mentioned above, the one Sally Jo Sorensen broke at BSP.

Congratulations!

(Crossposted to Renaissance Post.)

Posted in blogs and blogging, heroes, heroines, media, Minnesota, real journalism | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on Monday Morning News Roundup

How Can This Be Happening?!?

Posted by Phoenix Woman on January 5, 2011

That spinning flying object you’re seeing in the sky right now? It’s my head. It popped clean off of my shoulders when I read this:

A Vernon Center sex assault suspect’s ability to post a larger bond for his release from jail is raising new questions about how he is able to qualify for a public defender.

Jeremy Allen Giefer, 37, posted a $350,000 bond for his release from jail Monday. The bond amount, issued by Griffin Bail Bonds, included $250,000 Giefer had previously posted before being arrested and jailed again for allegedly violating his release conditions.

You remember Mr. Giefer, right? The guy who now-former governor Tim Pawlenty had pardoned, thus erasing his statutory rape conviction? The conviction he’d earned because he, as a 19-year-old alleged adult, knocked up a 14-year-old, then married her — and now stands accused of molesting the very child, the young daughter, who was the product of his impregnating the 14-year-old? (Oh, and he’s got at least one other child by another woman — a woman he was sexually assaulting — that we know of.)

Now he’s managed to get out on bail, after the judge raised the bail because the silly twit was caught violating the terms of it.

I am aghast. As I stated over in the comments threads at Bluestem Prairie:

If he’d been a poor black guy living in South Minneapolis, his chance for bail would have been revoked the second he tried contacting his victim-daughter. Who the hell is pulling strings for this guy? And how much more blatant can this get?

This guy’s been coddled ever since he became a legal adult — and I have a feeling he was coddled well before he became a legal adult, because that’s the most likely reason I can find for his apparent belief (well justified by events) that he will be allowed to get away with damned near anything.

Again, I am aghast.

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