Des Moines Register: Woolson to Support Pawlenty

The Washington Post reports this morning that Eric Woolson, who managed Mike Huckabee’s winning 2008 Republican presidential caucus campaign, has signed on to work for former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

Woolson’s portfolio is among the widest-ranging among Iowa’s GOP operatives, including stretches with Gov. Terry Branstad, the presidential campaign of George W. Bush and recently the 2010 primary campaign of Bob Vander Plaats, who lost to Branstad’s comeback campaign.

But Woolson, 52 of West Des Moines, received a lot of national attention as the chief Iowa strategist for Huckabee’s Cinderella 2008 campaign. Woolson earned a spot on The Des Moines Register’s list of 50 Most Wanted GOP and conservative operatives in December.

That would puts Woolson on the same team as other big-name Iowans in Pawlenty’s camp, such as former Bush Midwest political director Karen Slifka and former state GOP Chairman Chuck Larson.

The development, reported here by the Post’s Chris Cilliza, will certainly fuel speculation that Huckabee, who has said he is weighing a 2012 campaign, will not be a candidate.

Huckabee, now a popular Fox News Channel program host, told reporters last month before launching a national book tour that he would have to have assurances that the fundraising piece would be assured before he ran again. Huckabee said he did not enjoy cold-calling donors, a vital part of the rigors of a campaign.

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