Report: Rick Perry Running In 2012

The Daily Caller’s Matt Lewis reports that Texas Governor Rick Perry is ready to throw his ten gallon hat in the ring:

Two separate and reliable sources in Texas tell me serious preparations are being made for Governor Rick Perry, 61, to seek the Republican nomination for president.

Dave Carney and Rob Johnson — the former top Perry aides who on Thursday left Newt Gingrich’s floundering campaign — are said to be heading to Texas soon to join in on preparations for the run. I am told this is now “ninety percent likely to occur.” Additionally, Perry allies have begun holding meetings in the state and have been instructed to
quietly reach out to contacts in early primary states.

The stars may have finally aligned for Perry, who, until recently, said he had no intentions of seeking the nomination. With no clear front runner emerging, and with Gingrich’s campaign dissolving, Perry could enter the field as a top-tier candidate, surrounded by the same team that helped him defeat Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison last year in the Texas gubernatorial primary. And because Texas leads the nation in job creation, the recent national economic numbers provide an instant rationale for his candidacy.

Perry has become a Tea Party favorite over the past two years, but there’s also plenty in his ten years as Texas Governor to cause conservatives concern:
If Perry does indeed jump in the race, GOP primary voters will likely be reminded of how conservatives were outraged when he signed an executive order in 2007, making Texas the first state in the nation to mandate Human papilloma virus  (HPV) vaccinations for sixth-grade girls. They will be reminded that he endorsed Rudy Giuliani for president in 2008. And, of course, his controversial plans to create a Trans-Texas Corridor (which were finally dropped after a large public outcry) would come up. Perry would also have to find a way to extricate himself from his important duties as head of the Republican Governor’s Association (RGA).
Despite this, though, Texas’s economic record during a period of downturn nationwide, and Perry’s fiscally conservative rhetoric is likely to endear him to many in the base and could vault him into the top tier of candidates relatively quickly.
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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. sam says:

    Great. A sesesh candidate for president. Super.

  2. James Joyner says:

    I haven’t followed him that closely but agree that he’d be an instant contender. Behind Romney but ahead of Pawlenty, the other guy everyone says is a frontrunner even though he barely registers in the polls. And he appeals to Tea Party types while being much more plausible than Palin or Bachmann.

  3. OzarkHillbilly (used to be tom p) says:

    Oh great… Like the last Governer from Texas worked out so well for us.

  4. Tsar Nicholas II says:

    Late to the party and far behind Romney in the money race. But obviously a very serious contender for the nomination and, were he to receive the nod, a very formidable general election candidate.

  5. Franklin says:

    They will be reminded that he endorsed Rudy Giuliani for president in 2008.

    I guess I didn’t realize that this was such a problem. I mean, Giuliani wasn’t a great candidate for President, but to make pariahs out of anybody who endorsed him seems slightly outlandish.

  6. Kylopod says:

    >but to make pariahs out of anybody who endorsed him seems slightly outlandish.

    And most of Republican politics isn’t? He held many moderate-to-liberal positions that are an anathema to the Republican base, including support for abortion rights and gun control. The very things which made him unacceptable as a candidate could also taint any candidate who supported him, just as the fact that he once endorsed Mario Cuomo for governor probably hurt his own presidential bid. I’m not saying Perry’s bid is as doomed as Rudy’s was in ’08, but the former’s endorsement of the latter is probably a weak spot for him. As an analogy, how do you think Obama’s candidacy in ’08 would have gone if it came out that he had endorsed Joe Lieberman for president in 2004?

  7. Davebo says:

    I guess this means we won’t be seceding after all!

    But seriously, the fact that governor big hair could jump to near the top of primary candidates just emphasizes how sad the GOP field really is.

  8. PJ says:

    Will he deliver Texas to the republicans?
    Actually, at least he will, most likely, deliver his state to the republicans, something I doubt Pawlenty, Bachmann, Giuliani, or Romney will be able to do.
    Unless Texas defaults on their debt or something before the general election…

  9. michael reynolds says:

    I actually think he woud jump ahead of Romney. I think Perry would be deadly to Palin and Bachman, and he would expose Romney’s core weakness. My guess would be that two weeks after he gets in he polls at #1.

    Can he beat Obama? Possibly. Which puts hom on par with Romney. I don’t believe any of the rest could take Obama. I think the Texas economy — which has dick-all to do with Perry, but that’s a mere fact — will look awfully good to voters in Ohio.