With time beginning to run out on the various GOP candidates working to move into top tier positions, most analysts have agreed that former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty will need a very good showing in Iowa. This task became tougher for T-Paw when Michele Bachmann, an Iowa native, jumped into the race. Now, Politico reports that Pawlenty is jumping in early and putting his money where his mouth is with an early ad buy.
Pawlenty is going up with ads in the first-in-the-nation caucus state starting tomorrow on Fox News with a buy just under $50,000 in the Cedar Rapids, Des Moines, Omaha, Ottumwa, Rochester, and Sioux City media markets. The ads will run from June 23rd to July 3rd.
The ad buy is a sign of the urgency for Pawlenty to generate interest for his candidacy before the end of the second quarter and the run-up to the Ames straw poll in August.
Everyone thus far seems to be treating Iowa differently. Mitt doesn’t seem as serious about it after all he invested there in 2008, only to come away with the silver medal. Rick Perry, if he gets in the race at all, is heading to South Carolina on the day of the straw poll. If this turns into a shoot-out between Pawlenty and Bachmann, the early stage will have a decidedly social conservative feel to it.
But Pawlenty is getting around to all the early states. At this point, though, I’m finding it hard to see how he surges in New Hampshire, given all the competition for that state. It’s the dog days of summer, though. We’ve all been surprised in years past.