Jewish World Review Nov 2, 2011/ 5 Mar-Cheshvan, 5772
Tim Pawlenty's Lost Chance
By Jonah Goldberg
Looking back on the events of 2011, who do you think has more regrets for his bad decisions,
I guess you have to give it to Mubarak. After all, the guy gave up a cushy gig ruling
All Pawlenty did was blow his entirely plausible shot at the presidency.
But one thing is clear: Both men misread their moments.
Let's hop into the way-back machine. Pawlenty's plan was to be the alternative to
In order to justify the money he was asking of donors, he had to do well in the
Tactically, Pawlenty's mistakes are too numerous to count. But strategically, Pawlenty had the right idea: be the most electable candidate to the right of Romney.
Because right now, electable is turning out to be a pretty high bar.
Bachmann's done, even if she doesn't realize it yet. Her campaign never recovered from the entry of
Perry was ill-prepared substantively, psychologically and politically for front-runner status, and it showed. He seemed to think that all he needed to say was, "No need to worry anymore. I'm
Perry's frustration has to be particularly acute because he'll never win back that first impression. When he entered the race, he drew massively from the 75 percent to 80 percent of the
One little-noticed irony:
Speaking of which, everyone is talking about how the debates matter more this year -- which is true -- because of the changing media landscape, which is mostly nonsense. The debates matter because a lot of voters are desperate for a new president, and the debates are where most of us go to shop for one.
Now back to Pawlenty. His problem stemmed from the fact that he's a vanilla guy who thought he needed to convince conservatives he was a more exciting flavor. He should have waited, because vanilla may not be anyone's first choice, but it's almost everyone's second choice.
In this respect,
Given what we know so far, the allegations that, as head of the
And that leaves Romney. Not since
Many conservatives are reconciled to a Romney victory the way they are to the inevitability of catching the seasonal flu.
This should be Pawlenty's moment. He could run as the vanilla alternative to the fat-free, sugar-free vanilla frogurt Romney.
That's not entirely fair to Romney, but what's fair got to do with it?
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