In hindsight, Gov. Tim Pawlenty wishes he’d taken a shot at a third term as governor.
Asked this week by the Duluth News Tribune‘s editorial board if he wished he had run for another term, the governor didn’t hesitate, the paper said:
“Yes,” he answered. “If I would have known then what I know now … given what I’ve been through and hoped to accomplish, but that [the DFL-controlled Legislature] blocked. But you can’t predict the future. And of course, I made my decision after the 2008 election when President Obama and the Democrats swept everything. I looked at that and [decided against] having to go over there and ram heads with [DFL Sen. Larry] Pogemiller and [DFL Rep. Margaret Anderson] Kelliher and their like. [There was a] high probability of that. Hindsight is 20/20.”
While in Duluth as part of a farewell tour of the state, Pawlenty also took credit for pointing the state in the right direction, the paper said.
“Minnesota has maintained its terrific quality of life compared to the rest of the nation and in many cases actually improved it over these last eight years. We have now pointed Minnesota in a direction that is much needed and long overdue as it relates to the fact that over these last decades — really, generations — Minnesota government has spent too much, too fast and for too long.
“Clearly, Minnesota needed to be pointed in a different direction that was more sustainable and responsible and more closely reflected the realities of today and really what are going to be the realities for the foreseeable future. We need a government that behaves more responsibly.”
As usual, the governor didn’t answer directly when asked about his presidential ambitions.