Tim Pawlenty: A Right Winger, Not A Goalie

At Politico, Minnesota’s own James Hohmann has a nice piece on Governor Tim Pawlenty titled “Once a goalie, Tim Pawlenty plays offense:”

Travel this Land of 10,000 Lakes–which goes gaga for ice hockey every winter–and it’s not unusual to hear voters describe their outgoing governor as a goalie, kicking away bad ideas.
But there is one Minnesotan who doesn’t describe Pawlenty that way these days: Pawlenty.
“My accomplishments I like to highlight go well beyond being a ‘goalie,’ ” Pawlenty, who turned 50 last Saturday, told POLITICO in an interview. “I’ll put my record against the record of any governor in the country, both offensively and defensively. We’ve stopped a lot of dumb stuff that the Democrats wanted to do, but we also got a lot done.” …
In Pawlenty’s telling of his eight years in office, he butted heads with Democrats and moderate Republicans, part of a frontal challenge to the state’s progressive tradition. He allowed a partial shutdown of state government in 2005. He vetoed 123 bills over eight years. He takes credit for cutting state taxes by nearly $800 million. …
“Anybody can get up and give a speech,” Pawlenty said, a seeming dig against some of his more headline-grabbing rivals. “The real question is going to be: Do you have the fortitude to take the pounding to get these things done? Without being immodest, because Minnesotans don’t like to be immodest, I did.”

That’s true, I think. Below, Pawlenty is pictured with former DFL governor Wendell Anderson.