In it, but not of it. TPM DC
Pawlenty was picking up a meme first started by the Daily Caller yesterday with a report indicating that House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi's district was receiving an inordinate number of the waivers, which are typically granted to employers who offer low wages.
Pelosi's office didn't respond to the Daily Caller, but the story was thoroughly debunked by Mother Jones' Suzy Khimm, among others. The White House put out its own statement noting the waivers will not continue past 2014, and describing the process by which they're granted.
The right has been after these waivers for a while -- claiming they show a basic corruption by the White House when it comes to its signature legislative achievement -- and it's little surprise that Obama opponents latched onto the Daily Caller story after it was published.
"Unflippingbelievable! No, wait, it is believable," Palin told the Daily Caller. "Seriously, this is corrupt."
Pawlenty picked up the meme and took it from the Palin fringe right into the Republican mainstream.
"Another example of really crony politics, or crony capitalism," Pawlenty told Sean Hannity Tuesday. "if you've got the right connections, the right lobbyist, the right interest group, you get your special deal, and the rest of us get our wallet out."
Watch (waiver stuff starts about 6:40):