(CNN) - It's no surprise that Tim Pawlenty is ramping up his campaign efforts in Iowa.
Thursday the former Minnesota governor and 2012 Republican White House candidate started sending out mailers to voters in neighboring Iowa, which holds the first contest in the presidential caucus and primary calendar. And CNN has confirmed that Pawlenty will spend about 15 days in the Hawkeye state next month, in advance of an important straw poll in Ames, Iowa on August 13.
In the mailer, Pawlenty touts his blue collar roots, saying "I know the American dream because I've lived it." It also highlights his theme that "Washington is broken" and "leadership is about telling the truth."
Pawlenty needs a strong finish in next February's Iowa's caucuses in order to win the GOP nomination. He could face some serious competition from fellow Minnesotan Michele Bachmann.
The three-term congresswoman is expected later this month to formally declare her candidacy for the White House at an event in Waterloo, Iowa, where she was born.
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