John King, USA

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April 12th, 2011
07:43 PM ET

Pawlenty: 'I'm running for president'

(CNN) – Former Republican Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty told CNN's Piers Morgan Tuesday he's in the race.

"I'm running for president," Pawlenty said in an interview set to air Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on "Piers Morgan Tonight." "I'm not putting my hat in the ring rhetorically or ultimately for vice president. I'm focused on running for president."

But Pawlenty's campaign said the comments were not an official announcement.

"As the governor has said many times, he is not running to be anybody's vice president," Pawlenty spokesman Alex Conant told CNN. "He will have a formal announcement about running for president later this spring."

Pawlenty announced the formation of a presidential exploratory committee last month.

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