A rare divergence into the political arena today, as
current GOP presidential candidate Governor Tim Pawlenty, otherwise known as Tim From Eagan, actually said something newsworthy about the Vikings. When his office gets an inquiry about the stadium drive, we usually get the same old "Vikings are a valuable part of Minnesota but they should pay for their own stadium, blah, blah, blah" response. Today, though, was a bit different:
"We value the Vikings' importance to Minnesota -- we need to find a way to keep our Minnesota Vikings," he said during his Friday morning weekly radio show.
"They've made it clear they're not going to stay in the Metrodome" after the team's lease expires after the 2011 season, Pawlenty said. "It's fair to say the Metrodome has served us well ... [but] its time is fading."
Waitasecond. Regardless of what you think of Tim From Eagan on other policy issues, he's been criticized by many readers of this blog for his reluctance to lift a finger when it comes to the matter of a Vikings stadium. In my opinion, it's absurd that he's waited until now to express support for actually doing something to keep the team in Minnesota -- but better late than never, I suppose. We have, after all, waited patiently, waited some more, and then kept on waiting.
Can talk become action? It's a tough time politically to be supporting a Vikings stadium, and we'll inevitably be hearing shouts of "welfare for billionaires" coming from both sides of the aisle. But I've always hoped our representatives will realize that there's no comparison between the risk involved in doing nothing and the risk involved in doing something. Trust me -- you don't want to be the people who presided over the team's departure.