Posted at 06:31 PM ET, 01/06/2012

Rick Perry tweets photo of himself ‘just relaxing’ at shooting range

In what seems to be quickly becoming its own genre, Rick Perry tweeted the latest photo of himself Friday — a shot of the Texas governor firing a pistol at an Austin-area shooting range.

“Just relaxing a bit @ Red’s Range before we leave for New Hampshire!” he tweeted.

The photo is a shot taken of Perry from behind, wearing a dark green sweatshirt and black baseball cap and firing a pistol at the range.

Perry’s tweet comes on the eve of an ABC News-Yahoo-WMUR primary debate set for 9 p.m. Eastern on Saturday.

It also comes amid signs that Perry has every intention of staying in the race for the long haul.

Perry’s campaign announced Friday afternoon that Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio will chair his campaign in Arizona, putting a figure who has drawn heated controversy at the helm of the Texas governor’s efforts in the Grand Canyon State.

Arpaio, who endorsed Perry’s bid late last year and joined him on the campaign trail in Iowa last month, is a national figure who has fashioned himself as “America’s toughest sheriff.”

But his star has dimmed in recent weeks as the Department of Justice announced that it has launched an investigation into Arpaio’s office, accusing the Maricopa County sheriff and his staff of widespread civil rights violations against Hispanics.

The move by Perry suggests that he is planning to continue his campaign, which seemed unlikely to progress just a few days ago, following his fifth-place showing in Iowa. Arizona holds its presidential primary Feb. 28.

Perry also announced Friday that he has filed for the ballot in Ohio, where he has tapped a delegate and alternate in each of the state’s 16 newly drawn congressional districts, as well as in Arizona, where a statewide chairman is necessary to qualify.

He has also submitted the names of 16 delegates and alternates necessary to make the ballot in Washington, D.C., and has submitted more than the required 3,000 and 1,000 signatures required in Illinois and Vermont, respectively.

Vermont holds its primary March 6, Super Tuesday. The Illinois primary comes on March 20, and the District of Columbia’s primary falls April 3.

By  |  06:31 PM ET, 01/06/2012

 
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