Former U.S. Sen. Dave Durenberger's pithy political analyses are an admired feature of his e-newsletter, distributed under the banner of his National Institute of Health Policy, based at the University of St. Thomas. I appreciated his description of Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's presidential prospects, in his June 18 missive:

"Tim Pawlenty is John McCain on skates. He knows what he believes, he doesn't suffer fools, he chooses his fights, he loves the competition. He's not a great hockey player, but he's willing to put on pads and get out there with the best. Tim loves politics and service, loves his wife, and believes he will be led where he may not have expected to go. So he'll respond to invitations to share his thoughts and maybe, now, his experiences, with his party. Because the party that elected and re-elected him and the one that might have endorsed him in St. Paul last year if Sarah Palin hadn't come along, is no more the party of Pawlenty than it is of McCain."