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Gov. Rick Perry: Don't rule me out for 2016

The Texas governor made it clear during a panel discussion that he's still considering a bid for 2016.
Rick Perry in South Carolina, Jan. 17, 2012.
Rick Perry in South Carolina, Jan. 17, 2012.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry told CNN's Candy Crowley Sunday that he's still considering a run for president in 2016. The Republican was among a group of governors part of a panel discussion in D.C. for the National Governors Association winter meeting.

"Would any of you here today like to rule out running for president in 2016?," Crowley asked the panel, which also included Gov. Mike Pence, R-In., Gov. Dannel Malloy, D-Ct. and Gov. Jay Nixon, D-Mo.

When time came for Perry to answer, he simply said "No."

"No you won't rule yourself out?," Crowley asked Perry, who responded with silence.

Malloy stated firmly he wouldn't be a candidate in 2016, while Govs. Pence and Nixon acknowledged they were focused on their own states.

Governors have descended upon Washington D.C. this weekend for the National Governors Association winter meeting, and they are expected to dine in the White House Sunday evening and meet with the president on Monday.

The governors also discussed Colorado's recent legalizing of recreational marijuana use, with Perry saying he wouldn't consider legalizing marijuana in Texas. But Perry did commend his home state for marijuana arrests.

"What we've done in the state of Texas is about a decade ago, we started looking at adjusting the penalties for criminal use of marijuana. What we've seen is our prison populations have gone down," Perry said.

The panel also touched on the issue of the death penalty, which has seen revived debate after Ohio executed inmate Dennis McGuire with a controversial combination of drugs.

"Connecticut decided that we didn't want to have a death penalty any longer, to go to your point. There are a number of states that have taken that step over the last few years. And so, we're quickly approaching majority of the United States citizens that live in states that don't have the death penalty," Malloy said.