Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty hasn’t caught fire as a 2012 candidate or been able to assemble a strong following in Iowa since his campaign began. Candidates such as Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain and Mitt Romney seem to have sucked the air out of the room for Pawlenty.

As a result, The Dailly Caller is reporting that Public Policy Polling (PPP) has taken Pawlenty’s name out of some head-to-head match up poll questions:

As a result of Tim Pawlenty’s poor performance in its latest national poll, Public Policy Polling will no longer include the former Minnesota governor on the list of candidates it polls in a direct match-up against President Barack Obama at the state level. Pawlenty will still be included in PPP’s Republican primary polls.

PPP is set to release the results of its national poll this week. Teasing those results on Monday, Tom Jensen, PPP’s director, tweeted: “Rick Perry debuts in our national polling at 12%. Will replace Pawlenty in our state level general election polls because T-Paw is now 8th.”

He later clarified to The Daily Caller that Pawlenty was “only being dropped from our general election polling at the state level [from] the people we test against Obama. That’s limited to the top 5 in our national polling. He’ll still be in the Republican primary polling.”

Jensen explained that, “Who gets polled in general election match-ups is determined by the standings for the GOP primary since ostensibly the people who do best in the GOP primary have the best chance of ending up as Obama’s opponent.”

This doesn’t mean Pawlenty can’t be a strong dark horse heading into Iowa. He has solid credentials but his mild mannered attitude has been drowned out in recent months by larger personalities in the race. He has dipped way into single digits in Iowa and hasn’t been able to recover thus far.