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Google CEO schools Pawlenty on national TV

Apparently, it’s harder to dissemble on PBS than it is on Fox News.

Thursday, Gov. Tim Pawlenty met his match on the News Hour as he faced off over the stimulus bill with Google CEO Eric Schmidt. Pawlenty, armed with the sort of talking points Sean Hannity laps up, was calmly dismantled by Schmidt when alleging hot-button issues remained in the legislation.

The money part starts about ten minutes into this video, with the pertinent transcript below:

GOV. TIM PAWLENTY: … I’m not saying that all of this bill is bad ideas. We’re just talking about the fact that some of it is really not immediately stimulative. And if we want to debate, for example, STDs or smoking cessation or health care reform, those are good and legitimate issues, but probably should be handled in a separate bill, particularly when you’re trying to get bipartisan buy-in. And that’s one of the main objections.

NEWS HOUR HOST JUDY WOODRUFF: Eric Schmidt, how do you respond to that criticism?

ERIC SCHMIDT: Well, I actually agree with the governor, and those issues were actually taken out of the bill in conference. And now, in fact, the bill does not include most of those facilities.

Whether by ignorance or design, Pawlenty is often undone by old scripts, such as when he kept spreading the U.S. Senate car-ballot fiction after it was debunked. Woodruff does a good job busting the bromides.

On some level, the private-sector-worshiping Pawlenty is at a disadvantage debating a businessperson, rather than a Democratic politician. Still, throughout the 10-minute conversation (which starts at about the 4:30 mark of the video), Schmidt appears to be the chief executive more in command.

Comments (5)

  1. Submitted by scott schultz on 02/13/2009 - 03:10 pm.

    Pawlenty is an embarrassment to the state.

    If he hates this so much, then be a man and turn down the $2 billion. Otherwise he is a fraud!

    Every Republican governor should turn the money down if it is such a bad idea.

  2. Submitted by Tom Poe on 02/13/2009 - 05:36 pm.

    Pawlenty is taking Minnesota down with his Bush tax cut policies, his failure to act for citizens who are heading to total disaster. Continuing failed policies in the face of utter failure is criminal and he deserves to be treated as a criminal. Can’t wait to hear his presidential campaign claims.

  3. Submitted by Kathlyn Stone on 02/14/2009 - 09:29 am.

    Are some commentators suggesting that Pawlenty is putting his career and the GOP ahead of Minnesota interests? I’m shocked! I’m confident he’ll lead the party in crafting a very good alternate plan that will create more new jobless, homeless and uninsured.

  4. Submitted by Paul Kane on 02/14/2009 - 03:13 pm.

    Boy, any excuse to bash TPaw. Give me a break. The real story here is that Dems tried to put this shameless pork in in the first place. Being right from the get go is more important than being one news cycle behind. But if it makes you feel justified in TPaw hysteria, go ahead I guess.

  5. Submitted by Doug Cole on 02/16/2009 - 09:35 pm.

    I wonder why Pawlenty was selected for the interview. If they had talked about money for rebuilding bridges, he has a topic. He is not the republican party spokesman and neither is Norm Coleman. I think the republican party is starting to look like the cause of the economic meltdown. You can’t be against government if your are part of the government. But that’s what his talking points say. And letting the super rich just have free reign is not getting much favor either.

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