"My friend who I quoted at the start of this article, also reminds me of Reagan's 11th commandment. I get it. This week, both sides sullied it."
"August 15th can't come soon enough", lamented a friend of mine. Seems the race to have their candidate's name on the November ballot has become testy. Sometimes more than testy. Sometimes down and out mean spirited. And yes, I have been accused of stirring the pot against our former Governor. To that, I plead "guilty". But as we know, for most things in life, there are reasons for our behavior.
First off - a point of clarification. Someone on social media who is a Tim Pawlenty supporter, has taken offense at my term, "T Bot". Yes, that is a name I made up. However, it is not invective. Not in the least. Actually, it is not even meant to be insulting, only descriptive.
The term came to me before the convention when I was talking to some Pawlenty supporters, Talking about Tim's platform. The answers I got to my platform questions were "Only Tim can win" and "Jeff has lost two statewide elections". It was like rote speech. No platform discussions, just those two sentences. After I pushed, I did also get, "Tim has better statewide name recognition". That was it. Robotic responses.
For Pawlenty supporters, they can't (or won't) understand why Johnson supporters are as passionate as they are. I guess to know the answer to that, one would have had to walk the trail from caucus night to the state convention. To work the state fair on hot and sticky days. To attend campaign functions, walk in parades, staff phone booths. And then after the state convention when everyone walked out of the arena arm in arm, totally united, Tim goes to primary.
Some don't know this, so I will disclose it. Jeff has asked Tim more than once, both publicly and privately, to withdraw and join his team. The MN GOP party chair told Tim she was very disappointed he was going forward without party support. With Tim's support and donor cash, the MN GOP juggernaut would have been hard for any of the DFL folks to beat. But Tim refused. And then it was game on.
Here is the long and the short of it. If Tim Pawlenty wins the August primary, I will not do anything to hurt his chances. I won't "hate" on him. I will go silent on the Governor's race. My focus will then be helping Doug Wardlow. The AG position is almost as important as the Governor's chair. I will not hold any animus towards anyone who supported Tim Pawlenty. Nor do I expect any of the Pawlenty supporters to do the same to Johnson supporters. If we do, we will deserve the fate we get.
My friend who I quoted at the start of this article, also reminds me of Reagan's 11th commandment. I get it. This week, both sides sullied it. But I think there is a tacit side to Reagan's commandment also. Be a team player. Don't be selfish. Don't be opportunistic. Just saying. Now let's get to August 15th without hurting each other any more.