Rollins noted Huckabee wouldn't start his bid from scratch and has the benefit of having run before.

"He could put together [a campaign] much quicker than he did last cycle," said Rollins.

Unlike some recent Republican presidential bids, Huckabee has the advantage of a campaign team that remains collegiate. Many of the governor's top advisers are still in touch and say they would work together again if he asked them.

Still, building an effective fundraising operation takes time. And, in a cycle where the new House majority and a re-energized Republican National Committee are also recruiting and aggressively raising money, Huckabee could be at a disadvantage if he waits too long.


Other than the timing of his bid, another factor entering Huckabee's deliberations is the shape of the 2012 field. He took support from conservative Republicans and evangelical Christians during his 2008 run, but those groups could gravitate elsewhere — say, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, should she decide to run.

"He is really going to take a look at how the field looks," according to a Huckabee campaign adviser. If the governor's base constituency is still searching for a candidate, he could decide to jump in.

Another top adviser to Huckabee said the governor's not considering the field, but rather whether he has what it takes to win.

"We're doing an assessment on everything from our organization to our finances on the national level and if there's a path to victory, not just in the primary but the general election," the adviser said. "There’s no consideration of a draft [movement]; there's no consideration of who else is getting in.

"If it’s the right decision, he'll make it."

Huckabee has spent the last months focusing on his Fox News show and his political action committee, which remains active. "As you get closer to '12, [Huck PAC] is growing," the adviser said. "You take that [and the polls], and he's encouraged by it."