Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s support ahead of 2012’s presidential election has slipped over the past year among national Republican insiders, according to a recent National Journal poll.
In January 2010, 13 percent of so-called GOP insiders polled by the National Journal said Pawlenty would be the strongest candidate for their party in 2012. This year, that’s slipped to 9 percent. Pawlenty’s numbers have also slipped when it comes to the likelihood he’ll garner the 2012 Republican nod, according to the poll. He’s fallen 13 points since January 2010.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was the top contender, according to the poll. He’s the top favorite to actually gain the nomination, and nearly a quarter of the GOP insiders polled said they think he’d be the strongest candidate in the election.
The poll comes the same week Pawlenty officially left his post as governor and embarks on a publicity tour behind his new book that many believe is the prelude to an official bid for the White House in two years.
The tour will include stops on the television program The View and a speech at the National Press Club in Washington before he finishes the month in the key 2012 states of New Hampshire and Iowa, along with Florida, Texas, Ohio and Minnesota.