Gov. Tim Pawlenty said he's tried to maintain civility in his dealings with lawmakers and he acknowledges his recent "cheap shots" line pushed that boundary.
On his weekly radio program today Pawlenty was asked by a caller to explain why he had his top adviser tell House Majority Leader Tony Sertich, DFL-Chisholm, that "cheap shots are cheap, but they're not free."
Pawlenty said he probably shouldn't have told the staffer to say it to Sertich.
"You know, obviously in politics there's a little bit of rhetoric that goes back and forth. You want to try to keep it within a range of civility. I think generally I certainly try to do that," Pawlenty said. "Every once in a while I say some things that I wish I didn't say, and that's probably one of them. And so I certainly take my responsibility for that."
Pawlenty said he was bothered that Sertich criticized him in a Minnesota Public Radio report for not being engaged enough in the legislative session.
But the governor insists he was not threatening to veto specific bonding projects. He said he told DFL leaders repeatedly their bonding bill was too big and that he would cut its size.