Pawlenty campaigning for McCain in Mich.by Jessica Mador, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Gov. Tim Pawlenty was in Grand Rapids, Michigan, last night, campaigning for Republican presidential candidate John McCain.
The governor's appearance at the Kent County Republican Lincoln Day dinner fueled ongoing speculation that Pawlenty could be McCain's top choice for presidential running mate.
But speaking to a crowd of about 500 people, the governor dismissed questions about McCain's vice presidential pick. Instead, he told them it is time for the party to unite behind John McCain and revive the optimistic legacy of Ronald Reagan.
"Running for public office is a noble cause and I know people make fun of it sometimes, for good reason. But we need good people, as a democracy, to step forward and say this is worth some of my time, this is worth the application of my skills or gifts to try to make my city or my county or my state or our nation a better place," Pawlenty said.
When asked, Pawlenty wouldn't say whether he was being vetted by the McCain campaign or whether he has provided the campaign with any information.
"I've stopped engaging in all of the back and forth regarding the vice presidential questions. Each day I get asked about it for many weeks and months and just every word I change in any answer somebody thinks is significant and it just fuels more speculation so I just stopped engaging in it because I think it just fuels more speculation," Pawlenty said.
Pawlenty stopped addressing the vice presidential questions last week. Prior to that he repeatedly said that he was not being vetted by McCain's campaign.