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Pawlenty PAC not the first to use name Freedom First

Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s new Political Action Committee — which he says will raise money for other Republicans in 2010, not his projected 2012 presidential bid — is called the Freedom First PAC. And while that sounds like a strong, patriotic, Bush-like appellation, Chris Stellar at the Minnesota Independent notes that’s it’s not particularly original.

“Freedom First” is also a suburban Washington, D.C. credit union with dibs on the web address “”

“Freedom First” is also the name of a political group in Colorado that believes “the most powerful and ruthless Conspiracy in the history of mankind has a grip on world affairs and is seeking rapidly to eliminate the last bastions of potential resistance to its world hegemony.”

And “Freedom First” has already been taken as the name of a political committee in Florida, where one Republican state senator used it to help a colleague named “John Thrasher” thrash his opponents in a special election on Tuesday — the same day news of Pawlenty’s PAC went public.

And in an update, he notes:

MnIndy reader blueJ adds that the National Rifle Association is another organization that got to “Freedom First” first.

Other less politically hospitable associations include a political ad titled “Freedom First” by Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester of Montana (about his opposition on privacy grounds to the Patriot Act), and a group called “First Freedom First” that fights to maintain a separation between church and state.

Sarah Janecek at Politics in Minnesota notes that a PAC, by any other name, might not smell as sweet:

The naming of leadership PACs — particularly for lesser known candidates like Pawlenty — is not an inconsequential thing. The name connotes something about how the candidate views his or her candidacy, and it says a lot about the shape of the campaign the candidate means to run.

Consider the names of the leadership PACs formed by the other Republicans looking to board Air Force One in January 2013. Recent Value Voters poll winner and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee has “Huck PAC;” Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, “Sarah PAC;” and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, “Free and Strong America PAC.”

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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by Burton'Jon Blackwell on 09/25/2009 - 10:45 am.

    Let’s face it everything that Pawlenty has ever done in the political arena was motivated by self-agrandizement.


  2. Submitted by Aaron Neumann on 09/26/2009 - 03:34 am.

    Wow. They really are out of fresh ideas – even for names. Perhaps Republicans would be wise to read the new book by Fortune magazine contributing editor Matt Miller: “The Tyranny of Dead Ideas: Letting Go of the Old Ways of Thinking to Unleash a New Prosperity.” Having Pawlenty unallot Reaganomics on MN led to deeper cuts in things that people count on government to provide, plus higher property taxes and a big fiscal hole to trip up Pawlenty’s successor in 2011. Time for a new direction that actually puts “People First”.

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