If “Name that Veep” is your favorite parlor game, then you undoubtedly know the name Tim Pawlenty. But if you have a more scintillating social life than most Washingtonians, this is a new one on you.
So who is Tim Pawlenty? If, and we do mean if, you believe the rumors, he’s John McCain’s choice for his vice presidential nominee. But even if you don’t believe idle chatter, Pawlenty is one of the most successful Republicans in the country and as such, is a man you need to know. Here are his vital statistics:
Pawlenty is in his second term as governor of Minnesota, and is chairman of the National Governors Association. Past NGA chairmen include overachievers like Mike Huckabee, Howard Dean, John Ashcroft and Bill Clinton.
The 48-year-old went to University of Minnesota for undergraduate and law school. He married a fellow UM law graduate, and has two daughters.
He converted from Catholicism to Evangelical Lutheran.
Pawlenty balanced the state budget, but conservatives have hammered him for adding a 75-cent “fee” on every pack of cigarettes, despite a no-new-taxes campaign promise. Nationally, he has urged Republicans to reach out to “Walmart Republicans,” not just Wall Street Republicans.
According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, when Pawlenty won the Republican nomination for his second term, he took the stage and said, “I can tell you what your worst nightmare is,” he said. “It’s one of the big-spendin’, tax-raisin’, abortion-promotin’, gay marriage-embracin’, more welfare-without-accountability lovin’, school reform-resistin’, illegal immigration-supportin’ Democrats for governor who think Hillary Clinton should be president of the United States.”