Afternoon Fix: Pawlenty says Bachmann’s headaches are fair game

at 05:30 PM ET, 07/20/2011

Pawlenty says Bachmann’s headaches are a legit issue; Obama opens up to short-term debt-ceiling deal; Buchanan’s troubles grow; and Allen West says he has apologized to Wasserman Schultz.

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WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:

Tim Pawlenty suggests that Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-Minn.) headaches are a legitimate issue. “All of the candidates, I think, are going to have to be able to demonstrate they can do all of the job all of the time,” said Pawlenty, who has also questioned whether Bachmann’s experience readies her for the office of the presidency. “There’s no real time off in that job.”

An un-named former Bachmann “insider” tells ABC News that Bachmann’s debilitating headaches occur every two-to-four weeks and sometimes with greater frequency.

The White House says President Obama, who previously said he would reject a short-term debt-limit increase, would accept a short-term deal as a stopgap measure while a broader deal is negotiated.

Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) says he has apologized to Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) for telling her in an e-mail that she was “vile,” “characterless” and “not a Lady.”

A Twitter townhall held this afternoon by TeaParty.net featured Bachmann, former House speaker Newt Gingrich, businessman Herman Cain and former senator Rick Santorum. But the opening statements took 40 minutes, and there was relatively little new material that followed.

The government shutdown in Minnesota is officially over, after 20 days.

WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T MISS:

A former business partner of Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-Fla.) says in a new court filing that the congressman was the driving force behind a scheme to illegally inflate his fundraising totals during his first congressional campaign. And the partner, Sam Kazran, says he has proof to back it up.

Arizona is soliciting donations for a border fence, and officials say that even the $3.8 million they raised to defend their 2010 illegal immigration law could be significantly eclipsed.

Pawlenty’s campaign is scaling back expectations for the Ames Straw Poll – a lot. A Pawlenty spokesman told the National Review that a top-six or top-seven finish would constitute “progress.” Most believe Pawlenty needs a much stronger finish than that to be taken seriously.

Florida state Rep. Luis Garcia (D) has launched a campaign against embattled Rep. David Rivera (R-Fla.).

The Venetian is suing Tea Party Nation for $640,000 over a Las Vegas convention that was canceled last year due to lack of participation.

Check out this line from former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, who had to deal with the Winklevoss twins when he was president of Harvard University: “One of the things you learn as a college president is that if an undergraduate is wearing a tie and jacket on Thursday afternoon at three o’clock, there are two possibilities: One is that they’re looking for a job and have an interview; the other is that they are an a**hole. This was the latter case.”

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