Coleman made right decision

Published 7:25 am Friday, January 22, 2010

Former Sen. Norm Coleman made the correct decision for the state as well as himself and his family earlier this week when he announced he was not seeking the Republican nomination for governor.

Coleman as an unannounced prospective candidate had been the tail wagging the Republican race for governor.

The possibility of Coleman entering the governor’s race hung over all other GOP candidates. They can now emerge from the Coleman’s shadow and move Minnesota Republicans toward the future.

A late Coleman entry would not have been fair to the other GOP candidates nor to the party’s delegates or the state’s voters.

There is no doubt that Coleman would have been a formidable gubernatorial candidate. He is a moderate Republican, especially when compared to the 2010 crop of GOP candidates. However, 2010 is not the time for Coleman to run again for statewide office.

It has been just more than six months since Coleman lost the 2008 Senate election decision. No doubt, he is still recovering from the length and challenge of the 2008 race.

If he were a candidate in 2010, critics certainly would drag up the 2008 Senate election and the 1998 Governor election in which Coleman lost. He also still faces significant animosity throughout the state from the 2002 and 2008 Senate elections.

Coleman just may be smarter than other gubernatorial candidates this year. Many questions why anyone would want to be Minnesota’s governor in 2011.

The next governor will face the worst budget crisis since the 1930s, brought on by a combination of a poor economy and Gov. Pawlenty’s budget tricks, which have just kicked the growing state deficit down the road.

In the end, Coleman put the needs of his family and the state ahead of his personal political ambitions. He made the right decision on passing on his governor ambitions in 2010.

– The West Central Tribune of Willmar