Post: Pawlenty A Tortoise At No. 6

Gov. 6

The Washington Post reports that Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is the sixth top Republican in the 2012 presidential race.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin heads the list, which includes people such as talk radio guy Rush Limbaugh, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and ex-Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

"Tim Pawlenty: T-Paw is the tortoise of the 2012 race – carefully picking his spots to speak out on the national stage, always wary of overexposure or a misstep," the Post reports. "There are strengths and weaknesses to that strategy.

"On the positive side, Pawlenty avoids looking desperate or craven with three years before the election, and he has some time outside of the national spotlight to hone his message. On the negative, he seems resistant to putting together the sort of political structure — advisers who have been through this process before, a political action committee that allows him to donate to would-be supporters in places like Iowa and New Hampshire — that other candidates (Romney, Palin) are already building."

Pawlenty has yet to say whether he will seek a third term as governor in 2010.