A career politician without a college degree is not a good choice to oversee critical infrastructure planning. Or so say the Dems in the Minnesota legislature, who are telling Governor Tim Pawlenty to remove his Lt. Governor Carol Molnau from her appointed post as the state's transportation commissioner, or else they will fire her.
Molnau is your basic, run-of-the-mill "I hate government so put me in charge of it" Republican. Her appointment to the transport post in 2002 was basically a publicity stunt by the newly-elected Pawlenty to demonstrate that he was way anti-tax, justified on the grounds that he was saving the taxpayers one executive salary.
Her tenure at the Minnesota Department of Transportation has been a disaster. According to today’s Minneapolis Star Tribune
"Molnau's stardom in her party's no-new-taxes firmament is damaging the department's credibility. MnDOT is no longer trusted at the Legislature to tell the whole truth about its financial needs, lest it add up to a case for higher taxes. It's not trusted by many Minnesotans to tell the whole story about how best to keep them safely and efficiently mobile in years to come, since a full forecast might sound like a call for bigger government. MnDOT's own numbers indicate that Minnesota should spend an additional $2 billion a year to keep the system functioning at current levels. But MnDOT's commissioner applauded as Gov. Tim Pawlenty twice vetoed bills that would have come less than halfway in closing that gap - charging that they were too large."
Pawlenty is often mentioned as vice-presidential contender, and I for one hope he gets the slot. One photo of the collapsed I-35 bridge sums up everything there is to say about the efficacy of modern conservative political thought. Its ruins will still be visible when the GOP convention convenes across the river in St Paul.