Pawlenty to Officially Announce 2012 Run Monday

Pawlenty to Officially Announce 2012 Run Monday

By Alex Katz - May 20, 2011

Tim Pawlenty will formally announce his candidacy for president in Iowa on Monday, according to his aides.

The former Minnesota governor, who has focused much of his campaign's efforts and resources in the Hawkeye State, will reportedly make the announcement at a town hall in Des Moines before traveling to Florida and Washington, D.C.

Pawlenty was the first major Republican contender to launch a presidential exploratory committee when he filed with the Federal Election Commission in March, and his formal declaration has long been expected.

So far he has struggled with name recognition outside of his home state, polling in the single digits in national polls behind the better-known GOP candidates. But with Newt Gingrich stumbling early on and Mike Huckabee deciding not to run, Pawlenty is poised to be a strong contender in Iowa and is increasingly viewed by Republicans as a credible and formidable candidate who can appeal to the party's various factions.

Pawlenty, who held his first major fundraiser in Minneapolis this week, has also been securing funding from major Republican donors such as Texas developer Bob Perry, who was behind the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth in the 2004 campaign, and Ray Washburne, who was a key fundraiser in both of George W. Bush's presidential campaigns.

Alex Katz

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