MANCHESTER, NH -- Confirming that he will not be traveling to Virginia tomorrow for Mitt Romney's formal announcement of a running mate, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty said late Friday night that he is "not disappointed" about not being on the GOP ticket.
"I didn't enter this thinking I was going to be the vice presidential candidate, so I'm not disappointed," Pawlenty said of his advocacy for Romney since endorsing him last year. "And I'm excited about his candidacy, and I'm excited about having him be the next president."
Pawlenty has four public events in New Hampshire tomorrow, a busy schedule which he said he will keep despite Romney's event to announce his running mate in Norfolk, VA.
NBC's Carrie Dann spoke with Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who indicated he was not disappointed to not be chosen as Romney's Vice President, but said he is excited about Romney's canidacy.
"I am keeping my schedule in New Hampshire tomorrow, won't be at the announcement," he told reporters outside a hotel here in Manchester. "So you can deduce from there that since I'm keeping my schedule in New Hampshire, I can't also be in Virginia at the same time."
NBC News reports that three sources close to the Romney campaign have indicated that Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin is the GOP nominee's selection. Pawlenty would not confirm that but said that he is "excited" about Romney's choice, adding that he did know who the pick would be but could not reveal it.
"I can't say any more," he said. "We gotta now wait for Gov. Romney to make the announcement as to who his VP pick is and I'm sure it will be a great pick."
The former Minnesota governor, who was considered to be in the final three possible contenders for the VP slot, said that he did not receive a telephone call from Romney tonight but that he has spoken "regularly" with the nominee.
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Pawlenty has long been named as one of Romney's most loyal surrogates, making frequent television appearances and traveling the country on his behalf.
"This doesn't affect my attitude towards wanting him to be president," Pawlenty said Friday night. "I'm going to continue to work really hard to help him"
NBC's Andrea Mitchell reported that Romney's son Tagg had informed some of the also-rans that they would not be chosen for the job. The younger Romney was present at two fundraisers headlined by Pawlenty in New Hampshire Friday evening.