To headline a November equivalent to the Ronald Reagan dinner, according to the National Journal:
Des Moines Register‘s Beaumont reports, MN Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) is heading to IA on 11/7 to headline the state GOP’s fall fundraiser — his first visit of the cycle to the leadoff caucus state.
IA GOP exec. dir. Jeff Boeynik told the Register: “We are proud to announce that Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has agreed to headline our Republican fall event. … Gov. Pawlenty is the kind of leader we’re looking for.”
The fall fundraiser takes the place of what has traditionally been called the Ronald Reagan dinner, and is “aimed at bringing out rank-and-file” GOPers. The ticket price for what’s being called “Leadership for Iowa” is $25 “instead of the higher prices the Reagan dinner has typically fetched.”
It’s hard to pin down exact dates, but here’s what my research has turned up about the 2008 cycle Iowa visits. On September 26 and 27, 2005 Mike Huckabee made his first visit to Iowa and claimed to be considering a Presidential run. That’s equivalent to Sept of 2009, in this cycle. So T-Paw’s a little behind Huckabee in this metric. Mitt Romney had made 9 visits to Iowa by Sept of 2006 (though that included campaign events for Bush in 2004), so Pawlenty’s probably behind Romney circa 2008. But, most of the other candidates waited til 2006 to grace Iowa’s borders. I’m glad to see him make this move and, to me, it suggests he’s serious about competing in the first caucus.
I thought I’d post a MPR map I found a few weeks ago, which neatly highlighted Pawlenty’s travels this year:
This map’s a few weeks old so I know Pawlenty has added a few more stops to his log. Today, for instance, he has an interesting “face-off” with former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in Michigan. The Chicago Tribune reports:
Michigan Republicans are heading to Mackinac Island Friday to look over the 2010 crop of gubernatorial candidates as well as two possible 2012 presidential contenders.
Romney has home court advantage, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Pawlenty won a few converts.