From NBC's Domenico Montanaro
On the road to 2012 there are several steps.
One is adjusting your tone to suit your base. Check.
Another is upping your profile -- with a new national position (check), hitting the cable and speaking circuits (check and check), and starting a political action committee (and now, that's a check).
Gov. Tim Pawlenty, widely rumored to be eyeing a presidential run in 2012 has done all of the above, including today launching a shiny, new PAC.
"Governor Pawlenty is in the process of starting the 'Freedom First' PAC," wrote Alex Conant, a Pawlenty adviser and former RNC official, in an e-mail. "I expect it will launch within the next few weeks. When the Governor said he wouldn't seek re-election, he said in addition to finishing his term strong, he would help other Republicans candidates, and obviously a PAC is one key way to do that. In recent weeks, he has spoken to various groups, campaigned with various candidates, and been elected vice-chair of the Republican Governors Association. Starting a PAC is a logistical next step, and one that he has talked about on the record several times."
It certainly is a logical next step.