Mitt Romney had his son Tagg to deliver the bad news to Tim Pawlenty about not being chosen to run for vice president.
MANCHESTER, NH -- Confirming that he will not be traveling to Virginia tomorrow for Mitt Romney's formal announcement of a running mate, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty said late Friday night that he is "not disappointed" about not being on the GOP ticket.
"I didn't enter this thinking I was going to be the vice presidential candidate, so I'm not disappointed," Pawlenty said of his advocacy for Romney since endorsing him last year. "And I'm excited about his candidacy, and I'm excited about having him be the next president."
Pawlenty has four public events in New Hampshire tomorrow, a busy schedule which he said he will keep despite Romney's event to announce his running mate in Norfolk, VA.
NBC's Carrie Dann spoke with Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who indicated he was not disappointed to not be chosen as Romney's Vice President, but said he is excited about Romney's canidacy.
"I am keeping my schedule in New Hampshire tomorrow, won't be at the announcement," he told reporters outside a hotel here in Manchester. "So you can deduce from there that since I'm keeping my schedule in New Hampshire, I can't also be in Virginia at the same time."
NBC News reports that three sources close to the Romney campaign have indicated that Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin is the GOP nominee's selection. Pawlenty would not confirm that but said that he is "excited" about Romney's choice, adding that he did know who the pick would be but could not reveal it.
"I can't say any more," he said. "We gotta now wait for Gov. Romney to make the announcement as to who his VP pick is and I'm sure it will be a great pick."
The former Minnesota governor, who was considered to be in the final three possible contenders for the VP slot, said that he did not receive a telephone call from Romney tonight but that he has spoken "regularly" with the nominee.
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Pawlenty has long been named as one of Romney's most loyal surrogates, making frequent television appearances and traveling the country on his behalf.
"This doesn't affect my attitude towards wanting him to be president," Pawlenty said Friday night. "I'm going to continue to work really hard to help him"
NBC's Andrea Mitchell reported that Romney's son Tagg had informed some of the also-rans that they would not be chosen for the job. The younger Romney was present at two fundraisers headlined by Pawlenty in New Hampshire Friday evening.
Tim Pawlenty is said to be the Romney campaign's latest flavor of the month for its vice presidential selection. And Wednesday on The Ed Show, Ed explained why Romney and the former Minnesota governor might indeed be a dream ticket—for the Obama campaign.
Schultz took us back to 2007, when the I-35W Mississippi River Bridge in Minneapolis collapsed thanks to structural problems, killing 13. The accident came after Pawlenty, then the governor, had gutted transportation funding, and had refused to fund inspections which could have prevented accidents like the collapse.
That's not all. By the end of his term, Pawlenty had left 9 percent of Minnesotans without health insurance, and had added just 6,200 jobs in eight years, despite a booming national economy. And he stuck the state with a record $5 billion budget deficit.
Mike Hatch, a Democratic former Minnesota Attorney General joined Ed to talk about Pawlenty's lackluster record.
"If fiscal repsonsibilty is a key component of the selection, the governor fails in that regard," said Hatch. "I don't think leaving the state with a $5 billion deficit is fiscally responsible."
Politico's Maggie Haberman and former RNC chair Michael Steele join Hardball to discuss the report today that Senator Marco Rubio is not being vetted for Mitt Romney's running mate, and speculate on who may be on Romney's short list.
We noticed a fascinating, yet disturbing, report in today's excellent First Read article about Mitt Romney's selection process of his vice presidential running mate.
It appears that Romney is not seriously considering a woman, even though he has many qualified Republican females to choose from, including: former Sec. of State Condoleezza Rice, Sen. Kelly Ayotte, governors Jan Brewer, Mary Fallin and Nikki Haley, and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers.
So why not a woman on the ticket? After all, the Republicans broke that barrier four years by picking Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
Oh wait, it turns out that Palin is precisely the reason why Team Romney is NOT seriously looking at a woman to join the ticket. Palin is often cited as one of the reasons why Sen. John McCain lost to then-Sen. Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential election.
Here's what Michael O'Brien of the NBC News Political Unit wrote:
In particular, few women except for New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte – a freshman lawmaker from New England with only scant federal experience – are thought to be under consideration by Romney.
"I think, unfortunately, Palin poisoned the well on that," said one informal Romney adviser, fretting that any woman selected as VP would draw inevitable comparisons to the former Alaska governor. "I would guess if I were inside the Romney mind that they're worried that any woman chosen will be subjected to a higher level of scrutiny. "
O'Brien reports the three men at the top of Romney's short-list appear to be former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Ohio Sen. Rob Portman and Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan.
Who do you think Romney should/will pick?
As soon as President Obama set a timetable for getting out of Afghanistan, the Republicans started sharpening their knives.
Under the agreement Obama signed yesterday with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, American troops will stand down from a war footing in 2014, but the U.S. will continue to support Afghanistan through 2024.
Senior administration officials tell the Washington Post that U.S. trainers and Special Operations troops that remain in Afghanistan beyond 2014 will live on bases, sending "a signal to the Taliban that they cannot 'wait out' the international presence, which is supporting a fragile Afghan government."
But former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who has virtually no foreign policy experience and had to drop out of the presidential race after failing to beat fellow Minnesotan Michele Bachman, knows better than the team that got Osama bin Laden.
"Gov. (Mitt) Romney said 2014 may be an appropriate timetable, but let's not announce it ahead of time so those who don't have America's interests at heart can plan around it," said Pawlenty, who is now a surrogate for Romney.
"Don't give them the blueprint in public, with timelines attached to it. That's what President Obama has done. Gov. Romney would have taken a different approach and planned and executed those plans in private."
Is Pawlenty referring to the "quiet" rooms where Romney thinks we should use to talk about economic inequality?
When MSNBC's Ed Schultz challenged former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty on Rick Perry's charge that Mitt Romney is a "vulture capitalist," Pawlenty shot back, "Ed, you owe me dinner, by the way, I don't even know if I should be talking to you."
"No," Ed responded. "You had to win three more seats in the (2010) midterm for me to owe you dinner, but I'd buy anyway. I didn't vote for you in Minnesota, but you are a pretty good guy."
Ed continued to press Pawlenty on the "vulture capitalist" comment, which Pawlenty, a supporter of Romney, called disappointing. He also said the Romney "I like being able to fire people" quote was taken out of context.
Then, at the end of the interview, Pawlenty brought it up again:
"Rachel, I just want to make sure: Ed owes me dinner and he's not paying, and I'm a little ticked off about it," said Pawlenty.
"Let me tell you something, I have paid enough taxes under you in Minnesota, I'll guarantee you that," responded Ed, who lives in Minnesota.
"Oh man, man oh man. I thought you'd be at least a good enough person to pay off your wagers, Ed," said the former governor.
"You didn't win enough seats and you know you didn't!," Ed said.
"Man, You are unbelievable," said Pawlenty. "Alright."
The exchange was featured on tonight's rolling coverage of the New Hampshire primary on MSNBC.