Pawlenty downplays report on presidential run

Gov. Tim Pawlenty is downplaying a report that he's considering a run for president in 2012.

A Bloomberg.com news story today said Pawlenty acknowledged in an interview that he was considering seeking the Republican nomination if he gets some traction and some momentum. Pawlenty is not seeking a third term as governor next year.

He has not previously said what he planned to do when his term ended, even though others frequently mention him as a potential GOP presidential candidate.

Pawlenty told MPR News today he has still not made any decisions about his future plans.

"What I've said before, and I just said it a little different in the Bloomberg interview, was I haven't ruled anything out or in," said Pawlenty. "And that includes a whole array of private sector potential choices or interests, as well as public service. But as to whether I may or may not stay in politics, or may or may not be involved on the national level, I just don't know the answer to that."

Pawlenty's national political work continues next week, when he travels to New Jersey to campaign for that state's GOP candidate for governor.

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GOP candidate Chris Christie, a former U.S. attorney for New Jersey, is trying to unseat Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine in November.

Pawlenty also is heading to Orlando, Fla., to speak to a Republican women's group in September.

Since June, Pawlenty has been traveling on his own to speak about the future of the Republican Party.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)