Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s office issued a statement today on Tom Scheck’s report on the governor’s out of state travel. It quotes the governor’s communications director Brian McClung. Here it is:
“This MPR story is misleading. It focuses on the total number of days Governor Pawlenty has traveled and does not differentiate between activity during the week and on weekends.
“A fact omitted from the story is that Governor Pawlenty was out of Minnesota for just eight weekdays this year and virtually all of those trips were related to official duties as Chair of the National Governors Association or assisting the Minneapolis-St. Paul Host Committee.
“The majority of his travel occurred on weekends. It’s doubtful that most Minnesotans care if the Governor is playing hockey, campaigning or watching his daughter’s volleyball games on his own time on a Saturday or Sunday.
“In addition, Minnesota taxpayers did not foot the bill for any of these trips, except for the Governor’s annual participation in the National Governors Association Winter Meeting in Washington.”
So what was it about the story that was misleading? Was it this line?
It should be noted that most of that campaigning has occurred on the weekends.
Or was it this quote from the governor?
“Most of my travels have been on the weekends, and I put enough hours as governor to more than take care of my duties here.”
Or maybe it was these statements attributed to McClung?
McClung says McCain’s campaign, the RNC host committee, the Defense Department and the National Governors Assocation paid for nearly all of Pawlenty’s out-of-state travel.
He said the only time taxpayers picked up the tab for a trip was for NGA winter meetings in Washington D.C. last month.
Just what is it the governor’s office is complaining about in the story? Decide for yourself.