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It has already begun. The presidential election is over a year away, but former candidates are beginning to endorse their peers. Tim Pawlenty, who dropped out of the race last month, has placed his support behind Mitt Romney in an email to supporters on Monday.
“President Obama has failed to meet America’s economic challenges. … Fortunately, America may get a second chance: Mitt Romney is running for president, and I am proud to endorse him,” said Pawlenty in an email message sent out by the Romney campaign.
“[Romney] believes in the bedrock conservative ideals of limited government and free enterprise,” he continued. “He will stand up for America’s allies when they are threatened, with fortitude. And he will face down our adversaries. He is a formidable person, and he will certainly be a formidable president. Our allies can count on it, and our enemies should expect it.”
“He’s formulated an economic plan-a set of alternatives to the government-oriented programs that Barack Obama has put in place-that is unparalleled in the history of American electoral campaigns. By pressing for fundamental change in the way that Washington taxes and spends, issues regulations, uses energy, interacts with our major trading partners, and deals with our labor force, he fully envisions a way to place America back on the path toward rapid economic growth and full employment.”
Pawlenty also appeared on Fox News on Monday morning. He stated that Romney has significant experience in the private sector, which has influenced his decision to support the former Massachusetts governor. He also criticized Texas governor Rick Perry, specifically Perry’s reference to social security as a “ponzi scheme.”
“Governor Romney wants to fix Social Security — he doesn’t want to abolish it or end it,” Pawlenty said. “He doesn’t believe it should be thrown out — he thinks it should be reformed and fixed.” Responding to questions about his previous criticism of Romney’s health-care program, Pawlenty said he talked to Romney about his concerns and came away reassured.
“Mitt Romney is 100 percent dedicated and committed to repealing Obamacare,” Pawlenty said, citing Romney’s pledge to grant the states waivers from the federal law. Pawlenty will be a national co-chair of Romney’s campaign. He told Fox News that he had no vice presidential aspirations.
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