Former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty (R). (Laura Segall/Getty Images)
Pawlenty (R), a former Minnesota governor, made the comments Monday in Des Moines during the formal launch of his presidential campaign and said he would be coming to Washington this week to underscore the message about cutting federal spending.
But federal worker advocates challenged Pawlenty on his facts and said his words were based more in politics than reality.
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Ed O’Keefe is covering the 2016 presidential campaign, with a focus on Jeb Bush and other Republican candidates. He's covered presidential and congressional politics since 2008. Off the trail, he's covered Capitol Hill, federal agencies and the federal workforce, and spent a brief time covering the war in Iraq.