As talk of potential Vice Presidents continues to increase, we are going to find more and more public vetting taking place. This may include names being leaked by the campaign to gauge public reaction, independent or conservative journalists/ organizations reviewing the record of the potential nominees or simple news stories that make ya go hmmm.
Two of the big names currently being talked about are Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota and former DHS Secretary and PA Gov., Tom Ridge. Pawlenty has been the favorite of late, and that means plenty of record dissection.
Methinks the Club for Growth and online blog communities like HotAir.com aren’t going to be too happy with Pawlenty after this analysis of his record by Cato:
Pawlenty, who reportedly coined the term “Sam’s Club conservative” to describe his political philosophy, has been an economic populist and big-spender generally. Among other things, he:
1) Supported government subsidized health care for all children as the first step toward universal health insurance, and opposed President Bush’s veto of a Democratic bill that would have expanded the State Children’s Health Insurance program (SCHIP) to families earning as much as $83,000 per year;
2) Supports Massachusetts-style health care reform, including a “health care exchange” and an individual mandate;
3) Has called for banning all prescription drug advertizing, and seeks government imposed price controls for drugs offered through Medicare;
4) Proposed a $4000 per child preschool program for low-income children;
5) Pushed a statewide smoking ban smoking ban in workplaces, restaurants and bars;
6) Increased the state’s minimum wage;
7) Imposed some of the most aggressive and expensive renewable energy mandates in the country;
8) Was an ardent supporter of the farm bill;
9) Received only a “C” ranking on Cato’s 2006 Governor’s Report Card, finishing below such Democrats as Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack and tied with Democratic Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell.
If there is one thing Mike Huckabee learned in the primary season, it’s that it is VERY hard to get rid of the ‘big government Republican’ label. If Club for Growth jumps on this anti-Pawlenty bandwagon it will be very hard for McCain to pick the mulleted one.
Then we came across this little gem from Roll Call today.
Ridge Files Very Late for Albania
By Anna Palmer
Roll Call Staff
June 24, 2008
For almost two years former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge failed to register a nearly half-million-dollar lobbying contract that he had with the government of Albania.
(hat tip to Marc Ambinder)
Wellllllll that won’t help Mr. Ridge very much either.
So, who is left? Charlie Crist? Mitt “I spent $90 million and all I got was a lousy 11 states” Romney? Bobby Jindal? Or my personal favorite, Sarah Palin?