Larry Jacobs addresses Pawlenty's tenure based on previous administration.
Non-partisan experts on Minnesota politics give Pawlenty a more mixed scorecard. "When Pawlenty took over [in 2003] there already was a structural budget deficit," notes Lawrence Jacobs, director of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance at the University of Minnesota. "Revenues and taxes had been cut during the 1990s while the economy was soaring. Democrats, [former Governor] Jesse Ventura and Republicans were all complicit in that. Pawlenty comes in, the economy is falling down and the structural deficit is already in place. There are two ways of looking at that: blame him for not fixing that, or credit him for muddling through without raising revenues, depending on your political perspective."
July 7, 2011