Good Wednesday morning Fellow Seekers,
Gov. Pawlenty is heading to New Hampshire today. We’ll skip here the usual mandatory sentence noting that this may be taken as another indication that he’s running for prez. He’ll speak at a fund-raiser tonight for Repub candidates for the N.H. State Senate.
In a setup piece for the visit Real Clear Politics notes that N.H. visits by likely prez candidates have been surprisingly few until now. (Sarah Palin didn’t even go there on a her book tour). RCP also calls attention to one interesting inside-baseballish fact that may take on more importance when the N.H. primary gets close. New Hampshire has an open primary (not unusual, it just means that voters can vote in the Dem or Repub primary whichever they choose on election day).
Assuming Pres. Obama faces only token opposition, most independents will probably choose to vote in the Repub primary, which means whichever of the Repub candidates is deemed to be the moderate might have an elevated chance. Although Pawlenty is really just as conservative (and arguably moreso) than the other likely top Repub candidates, he has the knack of coming across as more moderate. As political scientist Dan Hofrenning said told me the last time I wrote about Pawlenty’s prez bid, if you can come across as conservative to conservatives and moderate to moderates, that’s political gold.
Anyway, in an interview with a New Hampshire radio station this a.m. in preparation for his visit, Pawlenty was pitching to the right side of the plate. He called for a federal balanced budget amendment, highlighted the dangers of out-of-control federal deficits, and said that the public has to learn how to value politicians who know how to say “no” as much as they do politicians who say “yes” to everything.
Since many DFLers like to taunt Pawlenty with the nickname Governor No, I found it interesting that Pawlenty views it as a badge of honor.