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Pawlenty surprised by Palin announcement

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Gov. Tim Pawlenty
Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty speaks at the Aspen Ideas Festival on July 3, 2009.
photo courtesy Michael Brands

Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is among those surprised by the resignation of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. 

Pawlenty was in Colorado when the news of Palin's decision broke Friday. He spoke to Minnesota Public Radio News at the Aspen Ideas Festival. 

"I think part of it was just a personal decision for her and her family," Pawlenty said. "It's an unusual decision or move on her part. But I think she may have just concluded that she's done what she can as governor, and, at least for her and her circumstances and her family considerations, she wanted to move on."

Palin and Pawlenty are both mentioned as possible Republican candidates for president in 2012, but neither has officially committed to the presidential race. Pawlenty recently announced he would not seek another term.

"I don't think it has any effect on anyone's decision, because I'm not sure what Gov. Palin's going to do," Pawlenty said. "I'm not sure what I'm going to do. So I think people speculating about 2012 is getting way ahead of ourselves."