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Tim Pawlenty's Gambit

By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times - May 8, 2011

Last week's Republican mini-debate may not have been the most auspicious way for a presidential candidate to introduce himself to a national audience. The stage in South Carolina didn't include most of the party's top names; instead, it boasted former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who wants to focus on gay marriage; Atlanta pizza magnate Herman Cain, who wants to run the government like a business; Rep. Ron Paul, the vinegary Texas libertarian; and Gary Johnson, a former governor of New Mexico who hopes to be the next Ron Paul. "It looked like the bar scene from 'Star Wars,'" said Republican strategist Scott Reed.

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