Pawlenty's weak fundraising haul 

A month ago in this space, I explored the following question: "Is the media vastly overrating Pawlenty's chances?" In the time that's followed, I think most would agree that the answer has been a resounding, "Yes!"

In the intervening period, Pawlenty has had a string of dismal showings in polls, a disastrous debate performance, and has witnessed his fellow Minnestotan Rep. Michele Bachmann enter the race and leapfrog over him as the chief rival to frontrunner Mitt Romney. Today we get word that he raised an anemic $4.2 million in the second quarter, well below the roughly $20 million Romney is expected to report. And Jim Antle of the American Spectator reports that it will also be less than the $4.5 million sources indicate Rep. Ron Paul, R.-Tex, has raised.

While there's still time for Pawlenty to turn things around, if he's to do so, he'll have to run a different kind of campaign than he initially conceived when he was viewed, along with Romney, as a top tier candidate.

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Philip Klein

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