POLITICS

Late Returns: For Tim Pawlenty, It Was Either Run For President Or Spend His Life Drinking And Pucking Around

05/19/2011 06:23 pm ET | Updated Jul 19, 2011

When Time magazine asked Tim Pawlenty when it was that "he first imagined himself worthy of the history books, ready to send soldiers to their deaths and endure the national stage’s harsh toll," Pawlenty said, "I wish I had a good answer for you on that.”

Pawlenty says it is not an idea that crossed his mind 15 or 20 years ago but that as he considered life as a relatively young ex-governor, he felt obliged not to take the easy path and “go make some money and play hockey and drink beer.” He adds that he almost didn’t run at all. “Mary and I talked about this at length, and many times, and it was a close call,” he says, mentioning his wife of 24 years. He adds with a laugh, “It could have gone the other way for all the reasons you’re suggesting.”

Matt Yglesias doesn't much like the answer, but anyone who watched The West Wing knows that question typically elicits some canned responses, at best. We know that if Mitch Daniels runs for President, he'll be able to answer that he did because, "Because the GOP elite wouldn't stop begging me!" And that won't be an answer for the history books, but it will at least be true.

Just once I'd like to hear someone say, "I'm running because an ancient prophecy foretold that only I could repel the coming invasion of the Tralfamadorians." I would probably contribute to that guy's PAC.

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Bad news for Gary Johnson as Willie Nelson rescinds his previous endorsement, because he's apparently not entirely convinced that Dennis Kucinich isn't running, or something. [Teapot Party]

Trump may have dropped out of the 2012 race, but the media is just going to keep on investigating him, because why not? [New York Times]

How many people do you think hate the way campaigns are covered? (SPOILER ALERT: EVERYONE) [Conor Friedersdorf @ Atlantic]

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