Now that the 2008 election is long over, he's bored with the Minnesota recount and he made an attempt to predict the Oscar winners, FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver is looking ahead to 2012 Republican presidential prospects.
He's created a "planetary model" of potential candidates, placing them on an ideological spectrum. In his commentary, Silver makes it clear that he doesn't see the interest in Gov. Tim Pawlenty. He's a snoozer, isn't he?
Silver places Pawlenty slightly in the "Moderate Outsiders/Populists" category, which he defines as this:
This quadrant is generally sparely populated by the GOP, whose liberal wing owes its heritage to the highly wonkish traditions of the Rockefeller Republicans. Several candidates, however, brush up against its fringe, most notably Huckabee, whose Main Street economic populism creates differentiation with almost every other candidate in the Republican field.And his comments on Pawlenty:
Tim Pawlenty fits vaguely into this category (especially if one believes that having a mullet gives you populist cred). But I've also never particularly understood what Palwenty's appeal is supposed to be: he got a fair amount of free airtime during the Republican veepstakes last year and didn't leave much of an impression.You can see the full map here to see where Pawlenty lands compared to other Republicans. Did Silver put Pawlenty in the right place?