- suspended campaign Sept. 11, 2015 -   




visits to 3rdQ 15

Democracy in Action 2012 campaign

Perry for President
  |  @teamrickperry

...announced June 4, 2015

...leadership PAC formed July 31, 2014

Americans for Economic Freedom
USAEconFreedom  |  @USAEconFreedom

...501(c)(4) formed Sept. 2013
Opportunity and Freedom PAC
opportunityandfreedompac |

...pro-Perry super PAC filed with the FEC on March 4, 2015

Conventional Wisdom

- Record as the longest serving governor of Texas.
- Clear and simple message centered on jobs and growth.
- Desire to redeem himself after his 2011-12 campaign, which he launched six weeks after undergoing back surgery.
"Oops" moment in the GOP primary debate in Auburn Hills, MI on Nov. 9, 2011, when he could not recall the third federal department he was proposing to eliminate.
- The mixed results America experienced with one Texas governor as president may dissuade voters from trying another.

Notes, Coverage and Speeches

photo of rick perry at the iowa ag summit
Jan. 24, 2015 - Iowa Freedom Summit.
Feb. 27, 2015 - At CPAC.
March 7, 2015 - Iowa Ag Summit.
March 14, 2013 - At CPAC. Feb. 24, 2014 - Participating in a Republican Governors Association briefing. March 7, 2014 - At CPAC.

- Announcement of suspension of campaign, Eagle Forum, St. Louis Airport Marriott Hotel, St. Louis, MO
, Sept. 11, 2015.
- "Reforming Wall Street," Committee to Unleash Prosperity Luncheon, New York, NY, July 29, 2015.
- "Defending Conservatism Against the Cancer of Trump-ism," Opportunity and Freedom PAC Forum, The Willard Hotel, Washington, DC, July 22, 2015.
- "Eonomic Opportunity for All Americans," the National Press Club, Washington, DC, July 2, 2015.
- Announcement speech at Addison Airport, Addison, TX, June 4, 2015.
- "Defending America" speech on national security and military service, The Citadel, Charleston, SC, April 6, 2015.
- Speech at Iowa Freedom Summit, Hoyt Sherman Place, Des Moines, IA, Jan. 24, 2015.
- Farewell speech to a joint session of the Texas Legislature, State Capitol, Austin, TX Jan. 15, 2015.
- Speech at CPAC, National Harbor, MD, March 7, 2014.
- Speech announcing he will not seek re-election, July 8, 2013.

2015 -
Rick Perry, who was first elected to office in 1984 as Democratic member of the Texas House, finished 14 years service as governor of the Lone Star state on January 20.  On January 15 he delivered his farewell address to a joint session of the legislature, lauding "a Texas of unlimited opportunity" and emphasizing economic growth and job creation.  The speech also included a pitch for bipartisanship.  "I believe we are at our best when we get beyond our differences and attempt to seek common ground," Perry stated (+). 

Perry announced his candidacy on June 4 in an airplane hanger in Addison, TX with military heroes and a C-130 behind him.  "We are just a few good decisions away from unleashing economic growth and reviving the American Dream," he declared (+).  In the next several months Perry
continued to focus much of his campaigning on the early states iof Iowa and South Carolina.  He emphasized his record of creating jobs in Texas and the role of smaller government, limited regulations and lower taxes in achieving that.  Perry also gave several speeches that attracted notice.  Perhaps the most significant was on the theme of "Economic Opportunity for All Americans" at the National Press Club on July 2.  He stated in his prepared remarks, "If we do these five things – if we create jobs, incentivize work, keep non-violent drug offenders out of prison, reform our schools, and reduce the cost of living – we will have done more for African-Americans than the last three Democratic Administrations combined."  In a July 22 speech, Perry took on Donald Trump.

However, a little more than two months after he formally entered the race, Perry's campaign had run into serious trouble.  First he missed the cut for the August 6 primetime debate in Cleveland, and days later his campaign, not faring well in fundraising, stopped paying staff.  His Iowa campaign chair left for Trump.

It appeared that Perry might try to carry on by focusing on South Carolina.  Further, the pro-Perry super PAC still had millions of dollars that could be used to spread his message while he tried to regroup.  However, on September 11, Perry announced he was suspending his campaign. 
"I share this news with no regrets," Perry told a meeting of Eagle Forum in St. Louis, MO.  "It has been a privilege and an honor to travel this country, to speak with the American people about their hopes and dreams, to see a sense of optimism prevalent despite a season of cynical politics."  

At the time of his departure from the race, Perry had spent more time in South Carolina than any candidate with the possible exception of Rick Santorum, and
he had put more time into Iowa than all but Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee
.  Perry was a much better, more prepared candidate than in his 2007 run, but in the end two factors probably weighed most heavily against him: the damaging impression that his race in 2007 had left in people's minds, and the mixed results achieved by another Texas governor, George W. Bush, when he became president.

2014 -
After a relatively quiet first half of the year, things got busy for Gov. Perry.  The crisis of thousands of unaccompanied children from Central America arriving at the Southern border put a spotlight on Perry.  On July 9 he met with President Obama, and two weeks later on July 21 he ordered deployment of up to 1,000 National Guard troops to the border (+).  Perry's makeover began to attract serious attention, exemplified by covers of the Weekly Standard (July 28 - "Rick Perry, Version 2.0") and National Journal (Aug. 2 - "The New Rick Perry"). 

n mid-August Perry garnered a huge dose of attention when a Travis County grand jury issued an indictment on two counts, abuse of official capacity and coercion of a public official, stemming from Perry's June 2013 line item veto of $7.5 million for the Travis County District Attorney's public integrity unit following Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg's arrest on drunken driving.  Perry treated the indictment as a political attack, stating, "We don't settle political differences with indictments in this country."  Observers from across the political spectrum generally supported Perry's position; the New York Times, for example, said the indictment "appears to be the product of an overzealous prosectuion in an editorial titled "Is Gov. Rick Perry's Bad Judgment Really a Crime?"  Perry's newly formed political action committee, RickPAC, put out a T-shirt with Perry's mug shot and the caption, "Wanted for securing the border and defeating Democrats" (+). 

Perry was also thrust into the news when the first case of Ebola was confirmed in Thomas Eric Duncan at a Dallas hospital on September 30, and a nurse who treated Duncan subsequently came down with the virus as well.  Perry burnished his international credentials, leading economic development trips to Asia in September and to Europe in October (+). 
Perry also put time into visiting early primary states, making a total of 13 visits totaling 24 days in 2013-14 to the three early states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, more than any other 2016 presidential prospect; Iowa in particular was a major focus. 

At the end of November and through December Perry ramped up preparations for a possible White House run, while stating that he would not make a final decision until May.  He held tutorial sessions/briefings with policy experts from various conservative think tanks, polished his media skills and conducted interviews with national press, and met with potential donors and bundlers.  (According to The Washington Post's Phillip Rucker, he was to host seven dinners for 600 potential donors paid for by his gubernatorial campaign committee in a tent at the Governor's Mansion). 

- On July 8 Gov. Perry announced he would not seek re-election in 2014
.  In prepared remarks he stated, "Texas works.  The jobs prove it.  The revenue picture proves it.  The number of people moving here proves it.  And that hasn't happened by accident.  Texas works because we have less government, less spending, fair regulations, and lower taxes."  Perry is the longest serving governor in Texas history, and when he finishes his tenure he will have led the state for a bit over 14 years.  Yet for some Americans their most lingering impression of Perry comes from his campaign for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination; his "oops" moment crippled his candidacy, and, many would argue, his future national prospects.  But Perry is showing many signs that he might run again.  Since August, he has sported a new look: wearing glasses.  In September he formed Americans for Economic Freedom, a 501(c)(4).  In mid-October, as Washington was enmeshed in the government shutdown, Americans for Economic Freedom ran a campaign-type ad touting the accomplishments of conservative governors.  In November Perry made a two-day trip to Iowa and in December he made a two-day trip to South Carolina.

Examples of Pre-Campaign and Campaign Communications
logo for Rick Perry's 501(c)(4) Americans for Economic Freedom

indep. pro-Perry super PAC

        logo for Rick Perry's RickPAC
                leadership PAC

          Logo for Perry for President
           campaign committee

Selected Early Videos
"Gov. Rick Perry Presidential Announcement" (June 4, 2015 - 1:12 video) >
"Rick Perry: Our Best Days Are Ahead" (May 20, 2015 - 1:03 video) >
"Iowa" Mar. 25, 2015 - 1:13 video) >
"Gov. Rick Perry: Iran Deal Will Jeopardize Israel's Security"
(Mar. 5, 2015 - 3:17 video)
"Rick Perry in Early States and CPAC" (Feb. 27, 2015 - 1:51 video) >
"Rick Perry Visits New Hampshire 2015" (Feb. 15, 2015 - 1:08 video) >
"Secure the border" (Aug. 12, 2014 - 1:29 video) >
Texans for Rick Perry
"The Economic Legacy of Governor Rick Perry" (Dec. 9, 2014 - 3:04 video) >   zzz
Americans for Economic Freedom +
"If you're tired of New York, there's an option: Texas" (week of April 22, 2014 - :30 TV ad run in NY) >
"Conservative State Governors Creating Jobs and Prosperity">
"Comparing California and Texas" (Mar. 17-19, 2014 - :30 TV ad run in CA; also a radio ad) >
"Conservative Leadership in Texas vs. Liberal Leadership in Illinois" (Feb. 21, 2014 - :30 TV ad run in IL) >

Digital Ads
Perry for President

Opportunity and Freedom PAC

"Values" (July 10, 2015 - TV ad, IA) >
"Secure the Border" (June 23, 2015 - TV ad, IA) >
"Only One" (June 11, 2015 - TV ad, IA) >
"Lost" (June 5, 2015 - TV ad in Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, IA) >

launch video (March 5, 2015 - 1:14 video) >

Digital Ads
Opportunity and Freedom PAC

Rick Perry.  Nov. 2010.  FED UP! Our Fight to Save America from Washington.  New York: Little, Brown and Company [Hachette Book Group]. +
"Now, do not misunderstand me, America is great. But we are fed up with being over-taxed and over-regulated.  We are tired of being told how much salt to put on our food, what kind of cars we can drive, what kinds of guns we can own, what kind of prayers we are allowed to say and where we can say them, what we are allowed to do to elect political candidates, what kind of energy we can use, what doctor we can see. What kind of nation are we becoming?"

Rick Perry.  2008.  ON MY HONOR: Why the American Values of the Boy Scouts Are Worth Fighting For.  Macon, GA: Stroud & Hall Publishers.
"In On My Honor, Texas governor Rick Perry, through the legacy of the Boy Scouts of America, takes dead aim at the moral relativism of the secular humanist movement, indicting its corrosive impact on the culture.  Examining the left’s legal assaults on the Boy Scouts of America - which span more than 30 years - Perry offers prescient insight into the multi-faceted war, which pits the proponents of traditional American values against the radical leftist movement that seeks to tear down our social foundations."

Jay Root.  Sept. 20, 2012.  OOPS!  A Diary from the 2012 Campaign.  San Francisco: Byliner Digital Services.
"'Oops!' is more than just a comically insightful, gaffe-by-gaffe chronicle of a presidential campaign meltdown: The Little Campaign That Couldn’t. While providing juicy, exclusive details from the front lines of how Perry’s White House aspirations imploded and his campaign staff splintered into rival factions, veteran political reporter and longtime Perry watcher Jay Root also shines a bright light on how American political campaigns really work in the age of Twitter, YouTube, and the insatiable appetite of the never-ending cable-and-Internet news cycle."  [Kindle]

James Moore and Jason Stanford.  Nov. 2011.  ADIOS MOFO: Why Rick Perry Will Make America Miss George W. BushAmazon Digital Services.
"Steeped in Texas politics, New York Times best selling author James Moore, and co-author Jason Stanford have been watching Rick Perry, the state's longest-serving governor, from his earliest days in Austin. Here, in the first full reckoning with Rick Perry's record, they retrace the rise of an obscure cotton grower from the plains of West Texas to presidential candidate of the Republican Party." [Kindle]

Sasha Issenberg.  Aug. 2011.  RICK PERRY AND HIS EGGHEADS: Inside the Brainiest Political Operation in America, A Sneak Preview from The Victory Lab.  New York: Random House LLC.

"For his 2006 reelection effort, his top strategist, the imposing and profane Dave Carney, convinced Perry to invite a quartet of academics into the war room to gauge the effectiveness of various campaign tools. In the heat of the campaign, they ran live randomized experiments testing candidate appearances, yard signs, television ads, etc. No candidate had done this before, and no one has done it since. Now, in this chapter-sized pull-out from his upcoming book, The Victory Lab, Sasha Issenberg brings us this ground-breaking story."  [Kindle]

Early Articles
Phillip Rucker.  "Rick Perry, hungry for redemption, says he's a 'substantially different' candidate.  The Washington Post.  Dec. 9, 2014.
Kenneth P. Vogel.  "Rick Perry ramps up for 2016." 
.  Nov. 28, 2014.

Michelle Cottle.  "The New Rick Perry."  National Journal.  Aug. 2, 2014.
Nate Blakeslee, Pamela Collloff, Erica Grieder, Mimi Swartz and Brian D. Sweany.  "The Rick Perry Report Card."
  Texas Monthly.  July 2014.  and Brian D. Sweany.  "Face to Face With Rick Perry."  Texas Monthly.  July 2014.
Katie Glueck.  "Rick Perry's extreme makeover."  Politico.  April 20, 2014.
Phillip Longman.  "Oops: The Texas Miracle That Isn't."  Washington Monthly.  March/April/May 2014.

Texans for Rick Perry

[old design to Jan. 2015]
Office of Gov. Rick Perry
TexasGovernor  |  @TexGov

  this page last revised September 27, 2015