Amid Northwest merger rumors, Pawlenty cancels trip to Las Vegas

The possibility of an imminent merger announcement by Northwest Airlines and Delta Air Lines has led Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty to cancel an out-of-state trip.

Pawlenty was due to fly Tuesday to Las Vegas to address a renewable energy conference.

But his spokesman says the trip was called off because of "ongoing activities involving Northwest and Delta."

Spokesman Brian McClung says the administration hasn't gotten any word that a deal is about to happen, but Pawlenty wants to "be able to stay in direct contact with staff and commissioners in case his involvement is needed."

The Republican governor says it's too soon to say if he'll fight the merger because he doesn't know what a combined Northwest-Delta company would mean for Minnesota. Northwest Airlines Corp. is based in Eagan and employs 11,500 people in Minnesota.

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