Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Is Pawlenty Moving Towards Ron Paul?

This is interesting.

Presidential candidate and former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty appears to think the way to win in 2012 is to move in the direction of Ron Paul. He is calling for massive tax cuts and a huge downsizing of government.

Of course, Pawlenty is no Ron Paul and it will be interesting to see how hardcore he is in upcoming debates, but his platform looks like he has read Liberty Defined: 50 Essential Issues That Affect Our Freedom.

According to WSJ:
Pawlenty wants to reduce the corporate tax rate from 35% to 15% and create just two tax brackets for individuals and families: a 10% rate on the first $50,000 of income for individuals – or $100,000 for married couples – and a 25% rate for all other income. In addition, he will call for the elimination of taxes on capital gains, dividends, interest income and inheritance.
How does Pawlenty plan to offset the tax cuts? Get a load of this:
In order to offset any lost tax revenue — and to tackle the deficit — Mr. Pawlenty calls for something called “The Google Test” to determine whether the government should be involved in a program.

“If you can find a good or service on the Internet, then the federal government probably doesn’t need to be doing it,” Mr. Pawlenty says. “The post office, the government printing office, Amtrak, Fannie [Mae] and Freddie [Mac], were all built in a time in our country when the private sector did not adequately provide those products. That’s no longer the case.”...The former governor will call for terminating all federal regulations, unless Congress votes to keep them individually.
I emphasize that Pawlenty is no Ron Paul, in Minnesota where he was governor, he left the state with a projected budget deficit in the billions of dollars. In other words, he appears to just be a politician who will say whatever he thinks will get him elected. But it sure looks like he has decided that Ron Paul's call for lowering taxes and eliminating government agencies is the way to win.


  1. The only areas of government involvement on a federal level by the "Google Test" definition would be national defense and printing money. Basically what the Constitution calls for originally with the exception of the postal service. All other social services can be left to the discretion of the states as to whether or not they choose to fund them.

  2. I get that Pawlenty is no Paul, and agree. But if he moves in that direction, what Pawlenty does have that Paul does not is the ability to speak to the public in a way that is not confusing and relevant.

    This could be a way to get some of Paul's ideas into the serious running.

    Remember, anything that takes away from the elitist power grab is good for the rest of us, regardless of who does it.

  3. As a Minnesotan, I want to clear up one thing about Pawlenty, there is no budget deficit, let alone billions of dollars. The deficit is in the automatic budget increases (over 20% increase) vs projected revenue. The Republican controlled House and Senate has passed a balanced budget, while increasing spending by 2 billion dollars making it the largest state budget ever. However, our Democrat governor insists on spending an additional 5 billion.

    That being said, Pawlenty never reduced taxes, increased "fees", and "balanced" the budget by telling schools that the state would pay them next year. If he is now calling for less taxes and reducing government services, it is a drastic change from his time as Governor.

  4. "The post office... [was] built in a time in our country when the private sector did not adequately provide those products."

    Lysander Spooner would like a word with you, Mr. Pawlenty.

  5. It's classic campaign strategy. He's tailoring his "message" toward what he believes to be the bulk of Republicans. After the primaries, in the general election, he would move towards a more moderate platform.

  6. I'd be happier with Pawlenty if he, like Ron Paul, said government agencies should be eliminated on the basis that there is no constitutional authority for them to exist, on top of being unaffordable.

  7. I suspect that Pawlenty may be motivated more by the success of the Tea Party movement than by Ron Paul's campaign although he may be looking at Ron Paul for ideas. My contention is that the GOP establishment seems to be concerned about Mitt Romney which is why we heard so much about Mitch Daniels and now about Jon Huntsman. The beltway GOP crowd wants a safe, establishment candidate who can co-opt the Tea Party message in ways that Mitt Romney cannot, and Pawlenty seems to be offering himself up in that mode.

    It's not what I'd be looking for in a candidate, but at least it's progress.