Washington (CNN) - Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty is not running for President, yet. The potential Republican candidate is still weighing his options he told a group of journalists at a National Press Club luncheon Thursday.
During the question and answer session, Pawlenty took special mention to praise former Republican president Ronald Reagan, calling him one of the greatest presidents in history.
"Americans are looking for not just an indictment of the problem, a bill of particulars around what's all the wrong things, they want to know, 'ok we got that now show us the way forward.' Ronald Reagan was able to do that substantively and stylistically and the country really needs that now," Pawlenty said.
National Press Club President Alan Bjerga goaded Pawlenty reminding him that Reagan had announced his candidacy for president at the Press Club. "Jimmy Carter and John Kennedy announced their candidacy here too but I didn't think you'd find that as convincing," Bjerga, who is also a reporter for Bloomberg News, said.
Pawlenty said he is seriously considering running for President, though he had not made a final decision yet but will in the coming months. He said there were two considerations he was weighing before throwing his hat into the ring for the 2012 race.
The first he said was "the needs of the country and what he could bring to the table in terms of leadership and perspective."
The second consideration was the potential toll on his family. "I have a family of course my wife, and two daughters I love very much, and a dog. And they need love and care and attention and as I make this decision that will be burdensome for them, that they're equipped and prepared for what's to come, if I do that as well."
Pawlenty was asked to look back to the last presidential election and give his take about what might of happened if John McCain had chosen someone else other than Alaska governor Sarah Palin to be his running mate. Although Pawlenty was considered for the post, he said it would not have made a difference who McCain chose.
"With all due respect to my friend John McCain I don't think it was going to matter who he picked for his vice presidential running mate. I believe once the economy cratered in the late summer early fall of 2008, that he or who ever the Republican nomination was going to be was likely to loose the election," Pawlenty said.
In spite of that, he said Sarah Palin's influence on the country has been "large."
He drew a comparison between himself and Palin saying they both suffered from a similar form of political discrimination.
"If you went to a more prominent school in a different part of the country or you were law review editor of some journal, that's more valuable in the discussion than if you were the governor of Alaska or Minnesota, because there's this sense that, that's not quite up to our standards in some people's eyes. I don't buy that," he said.
Pawlenty appeared at the Press Club as part of the launch for his book tour supporting his recently released memoir, "The Courage to Stand."