Unfortunately for all of us, these days it's never too early to start thinking about and preparing for a presidential campaign. So now, two big names in the potential Republican field for 2012 appear to be laying the groundwork for a run, though -- as is typical for these situations -- they're not getting directly involved yet.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is one of those who might be gearing up for a campaign. He's long been discussed as a contender, and though the hype diminished in the wake of his lackluster response to President Obama's big speech to Congress this year, he's still going to have some momentum behind him. Now he might have some money too. Some of his supporters are forming a political action committee that would help his cause, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. (Hat-tip to Political Wire.) Jindal's people, unsurprisingly, say he doesn't have anything to do with the effort, and doesn't even support it. But that denial rings just a bit hollow, since his wife's uncle is involved.
Then there's Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who recently decided not to run for reelection in 2010 -- a sign, most people think, that he's got his eyes on a bigger prize. U.S. News & World Report's Paul Bedard seems to confirm those suspicions, reporting that instead of governing the state for another term, Pawlenty "will spend the next two years traveling the country to see if he can build enough support to run for president in 2012."