Six degrees of the White House

Everything in politics, it seems on some days, is connected to a desire to get to the White House.

Consider these items in the news today:

Gov. Tim Pawlenty – Is in Miami today. So are Sarah Palin, Bobby Jindal. They’re attending the Republican National Governors Association meeting where the agenda won’t be about the most effective means of bonding for transportation. They’ll discuss rebuilding the Republican Party, preferably with one of them at the top of the 2012 ticket. All three experienced the headiness of being national media stars in this year’s campaign. All three liked it.

Also at the event is Mitt Romney, who is not a governor anymore, but who also wants to be president.

Which brings us to:

The recount – Former Gov. Mitt Romney is one of the bankrollers of Sen. Norm Coleman’s recount operation for U.S. Senate, the New York Times reports. He’s donated $5,000 from his political action fund to help out Coleman, and not for completely altruistic reasons, says the Times.

That’s where the infusion of cash from Mr. Romney’s committee comes in. The “Free and Strong America” PAC also contributed $2,300 to Mr. Coleman’s election campaign. It’s Mr. Romney’s way of raising some of his own political capital. He is widely viewed as a potential G.O.P. contender in 2012.

Which puts him, potentially, as odds with Pawlenty, whose got his own problems. The DFL is already coming at him. The ’10 campaign — which Pawlenty has to win if he wants in on the 2012 action — has started with Rep. Paul Thissen’s official entry into the race this week.

It’s a race that may hinge on what Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak wants. He could also run for governor against Pawlenty, which would open up his seat in Minneapolis, a seat for which the head of the Neighborhood Revitalization Board yesterday said he would seek.

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