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Pawlenty gets GOP backing

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MINNEAPOLIS -- Gov. Tim Pawlenty sharply criticized his potential Democratic opponents after earning Republicans' endorsement for a second term Friday, but also apologized to GOP state convention delegates he failed to please in his first term.

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The prospect of a Democratic governor should be Republicans' worst nightmare, Pawlenty said.

"It's one (nightmare) of the big-spending, tax-raising, abortion-promoting, gay marriage-embracing, more-welfare-without-accountability-loving, school-reform-resisting, illegal-immigration-supporting Democrats for governor who thinks Hillary Clinton should be president of the United States," Pawlenty said.

Moments later, 1,275 Minnesota state Republican convention delegates gave him their unanimous approval for serving a second term.

The governor found a friendly audience in the Minneapolis Convention Center, where the state convention wraps up today with endorsements of other statewide candidates.

No one else was nominated for governor, although Minneapolis bar owner Sue Jeffers says she may challenge Pawlenty in the Sept. 12 primary election. The GOP convention's Nomination Committee turned down Jeffers' effort to earn a Friday vote.

After accepting the endorsement, Pawlenty said he will concentrate on making educational institutions accountable if elected to a second term. He offered no specific proposals, but when he launched his re-election campaign earlier this week he said high schools, especially, need to be reformed

For more on the story, see the print edition of the Republican Eagle or subscribe to our online edition at www.republican-eagleplus.com.

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Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.
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