Pawlenty Readies To Defy Minnesota Courts
That's how I read this announcement:
Two sources have confirmed that Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty will announce that he will not seek re-election in 2010.
The sources confirmed to WCCO-TV political reporter Pat Kessler that the announcement about Pawlenty's future plans will include an announcement that he will not seek a third term.
The announcement is expected to be made at a 2 p.m. press conference.
Pawlenty wants to run for President, and maybe wants to free his schedule for 2011 (although that didn't exactly work out for Mitt Romney). He also might want to avoid a re-election fight in a blue state after years of budget deficits and recessions. This is a bad time to be a Governor.
But clearly, not having to face Minnesota voters again frees him up to do whatever he deems necessary with respect to the US Senate election. Al Franken will probably get approval from the state Supreme Court within a couple weeks as the winner of the election. At that point the Court will, in all likelihood, request a certificate of election for Franken to be seated. The people of Minnesota want two Senators again. Pawlenty, by taking himself out of the running, removes himself of accountability and can now be free to show Republican primary voters what a good soldier he is. He'll refuse to sign the certificate. Heck, he makes this announcement THE DAY after the Supreme Court heard arguments in the Franken-Coleman case. He's practically begging you to make the connection.