Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty hired Jon Lerner as pollster and adviser for his presidential exploratory committee.
Lerner, who was also just signed on by former Florida Sen. George LeMieux for his 2012 Senate bid, is a 17-year political consulting veteran and the founder and principal of Red Sea and Basswood Research.
Last cycle, Lerner, a Minneapolis native, advised winning statewide candidates in Alaska, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Utah. He has also worked for the Club for Growth and the Republican Governors Association.
“Jon has a proven record of success helping elect conservatives to public office all across the country,” Pawlenty said in a statement Thursday. “Mary and I are proud to add a fellow Minnesotan to the team, and we are confident that his dedication and expertise will advance our efforts to unite the Republican party and restore the American economy.”