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Tim Pawlenty at CPAC Day 2

by Dan Barrett / /

Grover Norquist introduced Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, a critic of federal healthcare reform and increasing debt, spoke at 10AM on the second day of CPAC in Washington DC. After praising the recent DC snow storm for shutting down Congress, he described the Obama Administration as “hope and change and teleprompters.” His PAC, Freedom First, has the goal to make candidates who campaign under the conservative banner “walk the walk” when they get to Washington.

An emphasized point he made was “we can’t spend more than we have.” If the US has an income of $2.2 trillion, the government should only spend that amount. With $65 trillion total unfunded liabilities, he was prompted to declare, “if the US was a bank, they’d shut themselves down.” Pawlenty’s state has “taken the spending curve down to zero…after 150 years.” He has spent his time as Governor cutting his state’s spending, which has generated outrage from big spenders and unions, culminating in a proposed Constitutional Amendment to limit Minnesota’s government spending.

The Governor also criticized the GOP in a recent issue of Esquire magazine. He compared elections with markets by saying, “in 2006 and 2008, the marketplace was telling the Republicans 'We prefer the products and services of your competitors.”