By Andrew Leonard: It seems like a lifetime ago, but at one point, Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota, seemed to have a decent shot at becoming president. In a field of loons and crazies, Pawlenty’s biggest drawback was merely his extraordinary blandness.
But then came the disastrous third-place finish at the Iowa straw poll, and Pawlenty promptly quit the race. It’s hard to blame him — nothing says “loser” quite as much as getting thumped by Michele Bachmann. Not to worry, though, as he emerged not long afterward as a co-chairman of Mitt Romney’s campaign, with a potential chance of becoming the vice-presidential nominee or at least getting a juicy Cabinet position.
One thing we know about Tim Pawlenty: He is not afraid to quit! On Thursday the Financial Services Roundtable, Wall Street’s deepest pocketed and most influential lobbying organization, announced that Pawlenty is leaving Romney’s campaign to become its new leader, replacing longtime head Steve Bartlett. See ya later, Romney!
Twitter greeted the news with a million-and-one variations of rats-vacating-sinking-ships metaphors, but Pawlenty’s move is meaningful for much more than what it signals about the state of Romney’s foundering campaign. Think of it this way: As a consolation prize for not being nominated as president, Pawlenty gets a $2 million-a-year job defending a lobbying group whose fingerprints are all over the great financial crash crime scene. What more do we need to know about the corrupt state of modern American politics? Pawlenty could have been president — instead, his job will now be to dismantle and obstruct financial sector legislation.
Click here to read the whole article.