WASHINGTON, D.C -- Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty will report "somewhere around $400,000" in debt related to his failed presidential bid on Friday, a source with knowledge of the campaign told The Huffington Post.
When Pawlenty dropped his bid for the presidency immediately following a poor showing in August's Ames Straw poll, mounting campaign bills were rumored to be to blame. But when HuffPost reported that speculation, a Pawlenty aide said it was a major exaggeration.
"The debt has grown substantially from the time the campaign ended," the campaign aide said on Friday. "We were told by treasury that we were $170,000 in debt. But then bills on track came in and that number has grown."
The campaign source didn't dispute the fact that Pawlenty is now looking to former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, the candidate he endorsed upon leaving the campaign, to help him with his unpaid bills. That help has yet to arrive.
"You are not going to see $200,000 of donations from Massachusetts with still a $400,000 debt," the source said of the Federal Election Commission report that Pawlenty is set to file later Friday. "This report will not reflect any Romney help yet."
Pawlenty isn't leaning exclusively on Romney for financial help. The former Minnesota Governor has also asked senior advisers to continue to assist him with fundraising efforts.
Pawlenty is not the only recent presidential candidate to end his campaign with a great deal of debt. Hillary Clinton, for example, ended her 2008 primary bid millions in the red. To this day, she and her cadre of close advisers and friends send out fundraising appeals to supporters urging them to help retire her campaign debt.