From former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's speech at the Republican National Convention Wednesday:
I've come to realize that Barack Obama is the tattoo president. Like a big tattoo, it seemed cool when you were young. But later on, that decision doesn't look so good, and you wonder: what was I thinking? But the worst part is you're still going to have to explain it to your kids.
The full speech:
Thank you. Thank you very much. Good evening everyone, and welcome to Barack Obama's retirement party!
Four years ago, we came together for this convention back in my home state of Minnesota, and a lot's happened since then.
We've had four years of Barack Obama in the White House.
Ah, the Obama White House, one bad decision follows another. Hard to say exactly just what his worst mistake has been. There's so many to choose from: The stimulus. His energy policy. Obamacare. Taxes. Joe Biden.
I hear Joe's particularly interested in tonight's proceedings. He even thought about coming here to Tampa. And he's taking notes because when Paul Ryan speaks, Joe will finally get to hear what a real vice president sounds like!
But you know, President Obama isn't as bad as people say, he's actually worse.
The president takes more vacations than that guy on the Bizarre Foods show.
And I'll give Barack Obama credit for creating jobs these last four years for golf caddies.
Actually, Barack Obama is the first president to create more excuses than jobs! In his view, it's George's fault. It's the bank's fault. It's Europe's fault. It's the weather's fault. It's Congress' fault. Mr. President, if you want to find fault, I suggest you look in the mirror!
I've come to realize that Barack Obama is the tattoo president. Like a big tattoo, it seemed cool when you were young.
But later on, that decision doesn't look so good, and you wonder: what was I thinking?
But the worst part is you're still going to have to explain it to your kids.
Next week, Barack Obama will plead with America to give his failed ideas another chance. He's asking Americans to give him more time and more money.
Well sorry, Mr. President, but you're out of time, and we're out of money.
Barack Obama's failed us. But look, it's understandable. A lot of people fail at their first job.
Now, our opponents claim to be the party of the middle class. But Democrats don't understand this fundamental point: it's really hard for people to be part of the middle class if they don't have a job!
I know a bit about these things. I grew up in a meatpacking town.
For much of his life, my dad was a truck driver. My mom was a homemaker. She died when I was 16, and my dad lost his job not long after that. And I was the only one of the five kids in our family who had a chance to go to college.
When I traveled the country these past few years, I met Americans from all different walks of life.
If you ask middle-class Americans about their hopes and dreams, they'll share their heart, but also their concerns.
Can they pay the mortgage? Will they have enough money to buy groceries, or gas for the car? Will they be able to get their kids into college or pay the tuition?
But jobs don't come from politicians. They come from entrepreneurs, inventors, innovators and risk-takers.
America's entrepreneurs know taxes are too high, and regulations are too costly and complex. Obamacare frightens them. And they want more American energy.
And they're collectively making one common plea. They're saying: I want to grow my business and employ people, but they're also saying this: Just get the government off my back!
We need to let them know help's on the way, and help's name is Mitt Romney.
Ladies and gentlemen, we have the best candidate. This isn't his first job, or the first time he's been a leader who has produced results.
He made a success of failing companies. He made a success of the Olympics. He even made government in Massachusetts more effective and efficient.
And now he's ready to help get America back on track and Americans back to work. He has a plan to strengthen and grow America's middle class with lower taxes; a government that works for the American people instead of dashing their hopes and dreams; lower energy prices; and greater access to a quality education for all.
There's one other thing I want to leave you with tonight. It's important for America to know that Mitt Romney is not only a great leader, he's also a remarkable person. He's smart, gracious and wise. And he has this infectious good cheer about him—something I appreciate and something America needs.
Mitt Romney never quits moving. When he sees a problem, he goes after it and finds the solution.
It's that can-do spirit, combined with a lifetime of service and success that convinced me to support him. And it's that can-do spirit that we need in the White House, leading America now.
As a former governor, I know that leadership takes optimism, but not blind optimism.
We need a leader who understands the depth of our challenges, but who also doesn't shy away from them.
Mitt Romney knows what our problems are, and he has the tools, the experience, the energy and the right polices to fix them.
After four years of this president, we need Mitt Romney now, more than ever.
I'm proud to be supporting him for president of the United States, and I know you are too.
And with any luck, in a few months, Barack Obama will at last get some experience in the private sector.
Thank you. God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.