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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Former GOP presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty has whittled his campaign debt down to $17,500.

The remaining red ink is detailed in a monthly federal campaign report filed Tuesday. It is down considerably from the nearly half-million dollars Pawlenty owed last fall.

Pawlenty, Minnesota’s former governor, dropped out of the White House race in August after a poor showing at the Iowa GOP’s straw poll. He was worried about going deep into debt to keep his campaign afloat.

Pawlenty now backs former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in the race. Romney has helped Pawlenty raise money to pay off the debt.

Three finance and political consultants are still waiting to get paid by Pawlenty’s campaign. None is owed more than $7,500.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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