For some insight into why Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) didn't run for a third term, check out the new Star Tribune poll.

Just 30 percent of Minnesotans said they wanted the governor to run for president in 2012, while 55 percent didn't want him to do so. It seems inevitable that his campaign would have become a referendum on his national ambitions, and the people weren't ready to back him up on that.

If Pawlenty does run, he also can't count on his home state ending its longest-in-the-nation blue streak. While 25 percent of Minnesotans said they would likely vote for him in the presidential race, another 25 percent said they would consider it, and 43 percent said they would vote against him.

Pawlenty's approval rating is at 49 percent, according to the poll.