Gov. Pawlenty gave a 25 minute speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference this morning. My back of the envelope count shows that “freedom” was the most referenced term in his speech (at least ten times). He mentioned “government spending” or “big government” six times, “President Obama” five times and “God” four times. He didn’t mention a potential run for president in 2012 and didn’t mention his veto of GAMC.
Pawlenty also recycled his Tiger Woods joke (smash a nine iron into the back windshield of big government spending) and criticized President Obama for spending too much.
You can listen to the speech here (side note – I had to do a little surgery on it because we had an audio drop out. The audio gets tinny for five minutes):
Update: DNC spokesman Brad Woodhouse issued this statement on Pawlenty’s speech:
“Tim Pawlenty proved today that he is not serious about moving the country forward or engaging in the real policy debates we are having today. If Tim Pawlenty were the least bit serious, he would not use fiscal responsibility as a talking point while he uses one-time accounting fixes to ‘balance’ his state’s budget even as the state’s credit rating has been downgraded. If Tim Pawlenty were the least bit serious, he wouldn’t engage in false debate about Miranda rights for terrorists when the Obama Administration has pursued the most successful targeting of Al Qaeda and the Taliban in eight years. Tim Pawlenty today said that the country should take a nine iron to the government – but instead all he did today was take a nine iron to his own credibility.”
“The American people don’t need more empty soundbytes and red meat one-liners for the extreme right wing. They need serious leaders with serious solutions to the problems we face – and Pawlenty proved today that the only thing he is serious about is pandering to the radical right wing and embracing the Republican platform of obstruction and polarized partisanship that only makes it more difficult to get things done. Like other Republicans, Tim Pawlenty is out of touch with what Americans want, and just like their ideas, Pawlenty is just more of the same.”