Former presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty says the Republican Party has some good potential candidates for elections in 2014 and 2016 despite the backlash from the government shutdown, but T-Paw says his "political career has come to an end."
Pawlenty is now the CEO of the Financial Services Roundtable, working as a lobbyist for financial institutions, and says he does not view his job "as some sort of pathway" to future office.
Pawlenty sought the 2012 Republican presidential nomination between May and August 2011, before withdrawing from the race. Pawlenty then served as the campaign co-chair for the eventual Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney until September 2012, when he left that position to join the Financial Services Roundtable.
"For the moment it looks like the Republican Party broadly has taken a hit because of the shutdown and the threat of not lifting the debt ceiling and potentially defaulting on financial obligations," Pawlenty says. "But the elections are more than a year from now…People who say this means some kind of death knell to the Republican Party are overstating it."
As a financial sector advocate, Pawlenty advises candidates to "pay attention first and foremost to the bread and butter issues of interest to average Americans, like' how is the economy doing?'"
"I think there is an exciting group of next generation leaders emerging in the Republican Party and the conservative movement, and our bench strength in that regard is actually strong," Pawlenty says.