- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sen. Lamar Alexander, weighing in on the 2012 presidential race, put in a plug for former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty on Sunday.

“There’s really only two or three people on either side who actually have a real shot,” Mr. Alexander, Tennessee Republican, said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” He predicted that the GOP would settle on a mainstream candidate with experience and the ability to raise the funds needed to run a winning campaign.

Tim Pawlenty has a much better chance than Donald Trump,” he said, dismissing a recent poll that shows the real estate magnate and reality-show television star leading the field of potential GOP nominees.

Mr. Alexander was joined on the show by Democratic former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, who said that a “dark horse” candidate would be the most formidable Republican challenger to President Obama.