Former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue says he's joining the leadership team for the campaign of Pawlenty, the former Minnesota governor. Perdue had been a national co-chairman for Gingrich, a former House speaker.
Several top aides parted with Gingrich on Thursday amid differences over campaign strategy. Gingrich says he'll press on.
Perdue brings a prominent southern Republican into Pawlenty's fold. In a written statement, Perdue praised Pawlenty as the GOP hopeful who "has the greatest chance of defeating President Obama" next year. The Democratic incumbent's challenger won't be known until early next year.
Pawlenty's campaign manager Nick Ayers previously held the same role for Perdue in Georgia.