It's being reported that Governor Tim Pawlenty will drop his Presidential bid, in light of his third-place showing at yesterday's Ames Straw Poll. There's no official confirmation yet, but that's just a formality. I'm on the way out the door to catch a flight home from the RedState Gathering, so my brief take on this: with Pawlenty leaving we're back down to three real candidates for the Republican nomination again (Bachmann, Perry, & Romney). All three benefit in the short term, obviously; in the long term this probably helps Romney most .
Unless the Bachmann campaign implodes, of course. Bachmann's probably going to end up wishing that she was competing with Pawlenty for attention instead of Perry. And that confrontation won't be helped by the fact that Pawlenty's people are probably even now calling up Perry's to find alternate employment (which they will get)...
*On a personal note: speaking as a mild Pawlenty supporter Gov. Perry is probably going to be my replacement choice: he's got a record of accomplishments, and they're accomplishments that don't make me wince. But the plural of anecdote is not data, so take that as you will.