All the guys who were competing to be Mitt Romney's running mate have gotten a consolation prize, except one: Poor old Tim Pawlenty. The Republican National Committee announced Thursday that Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte, and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell will all speak at the party's convention in Tampa. That follows news that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie will give the keynote address at the Republican National Convention and that Florida Sen. Marco Rubio will introduce him. But what about Pawlenty? He has nothing yet.
Pawlenty was the hardest worker on the stump for Mitt Romney. He traveled alone, carried his own suitcase, and was known for never complaining. "The rigors of Pawlenty’s schedule have made him the hardest-working Romney surrogate among all the vice presidential hopefuls, a fact that buoys his boosters, who read it as a sign that devotion will be rewarded," The Washington Post's Michael Leahy reported August 9, just two days before those dreams were crushed by Romney's selection of Paul Ryan instead. And Pawlenty needed this, because unlike all the others in the veepstakes, Pawlenty's political career has ended. He worked so hard to seem humble, too. "Pawlenty has labored earnestly to look like a suitably deferential number two, friends say privately — all the more impressive, they add, given how swiftly he had to recover from the disappointment of not being the number one," Leahy wrote. And yet, the rewards have not yet come.
Just a year ago, when Pawlenty was still running for president, The Atlantic Wire chronicled his love of poop jokes. One of those jokes was the one he made in his book about walking his dog after not being picked as John McCain's running mate in 2008:
"As I put the little bag over my hand and bent down to pick up her poop, I thought to myself, Well, this is the only number two I'll be picking up today."