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Parsing Pawlenty

The Hotline's Tim Alberta reviewed former Minnesota Gov. and potential 2012 contender Tim Pawlenty's (R) book Courage to Stand on Friday for National Journal. His take is well worth a read. Key points:

The unambiguous message behind former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's (R) long-awaited memoir, Courage to Stand, is captured brilliantly by one brief sentence tucked into the book's introduction: "We did it in Minnesota, and we have to do it in Washington."

While the 301-page book amusingly careens between entertaining anecdotes and spiritual encouragement, its underlying purpose is apparent from the moment you pick it up -- selling the author as a viable presidential candidate who in Minnesota conquered many of the problems plaguing America today. In fact, one quick glance at the back cover says it all: "A crushing deficit. Big government out of control. Runaway spending. Sound familiar?"

If there was any doubt before, this book emphatically erases it: Pawlenty is going to run for president. From the book's introductory pages to its closing words, Pawlenty pounds home a strong, simple message: 1) The federal government faces many of the exact challenges Minnesota's government faced when I took office. 2) In many cases, I solved them -- without raising taxes. 3) This makes me uniquely qualified to lead the country.

Of course, Pawlenty doesn't actually say that last part, but it's clear to anyone tracing his politically linear message that he's leading readers to connect the dots.

Check out the whole review here.

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