It may be because I grew up in the Midwest, but I think Tim Pawlenty is going to wear a lot less on Republican primary voters than Mitt Romney. Others describe Pawlenty as boring, someone who sucks the air out of the room. But his basic line — I’m not going to bullshit you, we’re in trouble — aims squarely at both Romney, who will flip before he’s even done flopping, and at Obama, who has a real record of accomplishment but also a real aversion to calling for sacrifice from average Americans. Over at The Daily Beast, Andrew Sulllivan calls Pawlenty the “eh, why not?” candidate, but I think the national media’s estimation of Pawlenty’s personal appeal is like a lot of national media estimating — that’s to say, it’s the sound of the one drunken Swiss yodeler who’s ever seen Pawlenty in person howling inside an echo chamber that has Phil Spector at the mixing board. But you can watch the video and judge for yourself whether Pawlenty is a sleeping pill, or the non-crazy Republican candidate from a battleground state who might just be Obama’s worst nightmare.
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