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Politics

Hotline Sort: The Road To The Whitehouse

5) Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who on Wednesday committed to attending a June 13 debate in New Hampshire, is also staffing up in the Granite State. Sarah Crawford Stewart, a veteran operative who worked for Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., in both 2000 and 2008, will be his state campaign director. Peter Towey will be the political director. 4) Following a report Wednesday in the Salt Lake Tribune that Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, has told insiders he plans to challenge Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, the Club for Growth issued a statement urging Chaffetz to run. "Fiscal conservatives can do better. If Congressman Chaffetz decides to run for the U.S. Senate, he will have the full support of the Club for Growth PAC and our 55,000 members," said Club for Growth President Chris Chocola. 3) There's something of a mini-battle within the Texas Senate GOP primary for conservative and Tea Party support, and former state Solicitor General Ted Cruz appears to have the early momentum. His latest big get: an endorsement of the fiscally-conservative FreedomWorks PAC. 2) A day after the House Republican Conference headed to the White House for a meeting with President Obama -- and on the day when House Democrats are scheduled to do the same -- the president and Congress are no closer to ending their impasse over raising the debt ceiling, let alone a larger budget agreement, Matt Cooper and Rebecca Kaplan report in today's National Journal Daily (subscriber). 1) Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney will officially announce he's running for president today in New Hampshire. In his remarks today, Romney rails against the president's handling of the struggling economy and vows to shrink the size of the government, ABC News reports. Check out National Journal's Jim O'Sullivan's rundown of Romney's planned fundraising stops for the rest of this month. Meanwhile, while details of Sarah Palin's bus tour continue to be kept secret, signs indicate she will visit New Hampshire Thursday.

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