Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is expected to take the first step toward running for president today, forming an exploratory committee. Pawlenty is to announce this on Facebook at 3 p.m. this afternoon, making him the first candidate to ever effectively declare on a social networking site. The committee will allow Pawlenty to begin to raise money and travel as a presidential candidate, though a formal declaration of candidacy probably won't come until later this spring.
While this isn't unexpected, Pawlenty's announcement does move the 2012 campaign forward. The only other candidate to take this step so far is Herman Cain. Pawlenty still isn't very well known, but his candidacy is taken seriously by the national press and his poll numbers are now several points ahead the bottom tier.
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