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Rice experts available for Pawlenty announcement

David Ruth

Rice University experts available to discuss Tim Pawlenty entering presidential race
Pawlenty is expected to announce on Monday that he is running for the Republican nomination

HOUSTON — (May 21, 2011) — Rice University political scientist Mark Jones and historian Douglas Brinkley are available to comment on former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty expected announcement Monday that he will seek the Republican Party nomination for president.

Pawlenty will be the fourth Republican to formally declare his candidacy, joining former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Texas Congressman Ron Paul and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson. Several other potential candidates are waiting in the wings.

“With a reputation as a pragmatic moderate of a state that generally votes Democrat in presidential elections, Pawlenty would represent a credible threat to President Obama’s re-election chances,” said Jones, professor and chair of political science and fellow in political science at the Baker Institute for Public Policy. “It remains to be seen however if Pawlenty will be able to gain the support of conservative Republican primary voters as well as raise his profile to the national level. The two-term former governor of Minnesota will compete with Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels for the moderate and pragmatic Republican vote.”

“Through the process of elimination, Tim Pawlenty has emerged as a low-key conservative from a swing state,” said Brinkley, professor of history and fellow in the Baker Institute for Public Policy. “And because of the proximity of Minnesota, he could play well in Iowa.”

To speak with Jones or Brinkley, contact David Ruth at 713-348-6327 or druth@rice.edu.


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Media note: Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy’s radio and television studio is available for ISDN and HDTV interviews.  Mark Jones is available over the weekend and nationwide; Douglas Brinkley is available beginning Monday morning and only available for national television, print and online news outlets.

Founded in 1993, the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University in Houston ranks among the top 20 university-affiliated think tanks globally and top 30 think tanks in the United States. As a premier nonpartisan think tank, the institute sponsors more than 20 programs that conduct research on domestic and foreign policy issues with the goal of bridging the gap between the theory and practice of public policy. The institute’s strong track record of achievement reflects the work of its endowed fellows and Rice University scholars. Learn more about the institute at www.bakerinstitute.org or on the institute’s blog, http://blogs.chron.com/bakerblog/.

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