MIAMI ( – GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has announced that he doesn’t plan to compete in several straw polls including ones in Iowa and Florida.

Romney competed in the Iowa Republican straw poll in 2008 and won after spending more than $1 million on the contest. Instead, Romney wants to focus the time and money on the 2012 campaign.

“We respect the straw poll process. In the last presidential campaign we were both strengthened as an organization and learned some important lessons by participating in them,” Romney campaign spokesman Matt Rhoades said in a written statement provided to the Associated Press. “This time we will focus our energies and resources on winning primaries and caucuses.”

Still, Romney will campaign heavily in Iowa and Florida. The Sunshine State will be the crown jewel in both the primaries and in the general election in 2012. Romney also said he would participate in a GOP debate on Fox News Channel in August.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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