Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty
says the 14 Democratic state senators, who fled Wisconsin in order not vote on a budget-cutting bill, should be fired for dereliction of duty. Pawlenty Wednesday also told Fox News’ Neal Cavuto that President Barack Obama can – and should – be beaten in 2012, and he will soon decide whether to seek the GOP nomination.
When Cavuto said he thought potential Republican candidates are reassessing the 2012 picture, thinking Obama might be unbeatable, the oft-mentioned possible contender said, “Obama does not deserve to be re-elected,” and the right GOP candidate could ensure that won’t happen.
“I don't think he's done a good job as president.” Pawlenty said. “I don't think he's unbeatable. I think he should be beaten.
“I think the future of America is at stake. I don’t like the fact that we have got people abroad and here thinking we are a nation in decline,” he said. “We need to be positive and hopeful and optimistic. And we have got to get this country moving and talk not just about cutting.”
Cavuto asked Pawlenty his reaction to the legislative standoff in Wisconsin, and what should be done about the 14 Democratic senators who refuse to vote on what they have labeled a union-busting bill – and their claim that in not doing so, they are just doing their jobs.
“When you raise your right hand and you look the people of Wisconsin or the country in the eye and say that you’re going to uphold the Constitution and uphold your duties, and then the first time you have something that isn’t going to your way, you skedaddle, like a little ninny, out of the state,” Pawlenty said. “It is a dereliction of duty, and they should be removed from office. It’s preposterous. This is not ‘Fantasy Island,’ Neil.
“The governor of Wisconsin has the opportunity and the responsibility to propose legislation. That is what he has done,” he added. “It is clearly within his legal and constitutional rights and opportunities. He is in Wisconsin. He’s doing his job. And when these folks stare a challenge in the face, the first thing they do is cut and run? I mean, give me a break.
“I think, at a minimum, the recall effort should go forward and get those public officials recalled for abandoning their responsibilities and their posts,” Pawlenty continued. “And I think it is really important that America, and all of us who believe in the need to restructure government, stand with [Gov. Scott] Walker, stand with Wisconsin.
“But, as to those legislators, they are derelict in their duties and they should be removed from office.”
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