ADDISON, Texas – Touting his military background and his upbringing in rural America, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry announced Thursday that he’ll make a second bid for the White House.
Perry stood at a podium in front of a C-130 prop plane emblazoned with the words “Perry for President” and told the crowd at a hangar in this Dallas suburb that it’s time for an American “reset.”“We have the power to make things new again. To project American strength again, to get our economy going again. And that is why today I am running for the presidency of the United States of America,” the longest-serving governor in Texas history said to loud applause.
Perry was accompanied by several military veterans, including Marcus Luttrell, the Navy SEAL made famous in the movie “Lone Survivor.” Taya Kyle, widow of Chris Kyle, the subject of the film “American Sniper” was also in attendance.
The 65-year-old former governor spent much of his speech hammering President Obama on the economy, foreign policy, and tax and regulatory policies that he said have “slammed the door shut” on Americans.
“We are a resilient country,” an upbeat Perry told the audience. “We even made it through Jimmy Carter. We will make it through the Obama years.”
Without offering much in the way of details, Perry promised a plan to fix the country’s entitlement system, secure the U.S. border and vowed to stem rising healthcare and tuition costs. He also promised on his first day in office to freeze pending regulations from the Obama administration, roll back “job killing mandates” created by Obamacare and Dodd-Frank, and to sign an executive order approving the construction of the controversial Keystone pipeline and to rescind any agreement with nuclear weapon-seeking Iran.
When Perry initially jumped in the 2012 race, he was seen as a strong candidate. But his momentum quickly stalled, ending in the now-famous “oops” moment on the debate stage when he couldn’t remember the name of the third government agency he had said he would eliminate.
This time around, he also faces a potential hurdle back at home in the Lone Star State, where a jury indicted him last year on two abuse of power charges. Perry has insisted the charges – stemming from his cutting funding for a public integrity office after its head refused to resign following a drunk driving arrest – were merely political.
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Perry joins a crowded and still emerging Republican field that includes Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Marco Rubio of Florida, in addition to former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, former Govs. George Pataki of New York and Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.
According to a Real Clear Politics average of polling data surrounding the GOP nomination, Perry is in 10th place, garnering just 2.7% support. Ahead of him are former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (13.2%), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (12.5%), Rubio (12%), Carson (9.2%), Paul (9.2%), Huckabee (8.7%), Cruz (8.5%), New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (4.8%) and billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump (4%).