On Thursday, Perry weighed in on the rampant speculation about his possible 2012 bid, telling Time’s Mark Halperin that he wants to be president.
“Part of it must be, I assume, whether or not you want to do it still,” Halperin said. “Is that still an open question?”
“You and I having this conversation has answered that question,” Perry responded.
In that interview, Perry stopped short of declaring his candidacy but rejected any notion that he couldn’t compete with President Obama’s formidable fundraising operation in the 2012 cycle, which had already raised $86 million for himself and the Democratic National Committee as of June 30. ”I think [my operation] will be quite competitive in the fundraising side,” he said.
“I’m kind of getting to the all-in point and the idea that this is what I’m supposed to be doing,” Perry told Halperin. “I’m very calm in my heart that this is what I’m supposed to be doing.”
In fact, within minutes of Miner’s announcement that the governor would run, Perry’s campaign had sent out an e-mail fundraising blast, inviting major contributors to attend events in Texas cities and neighboring states at the end of August and beginning of September: Tulsa and Oklahoma City (Aug. 29); Fort Worth and Dallas (Aug. 30); Austin, New Orleans and Houston (Aug. 31); and Midland, Texas, and San Antonio (Sept. 1).
“Thank you for being willing to contribute to Governor Perry’s Presidential Campaign and raise money, [or] both. On behalf of our team, we are very, very grateful.” says the e-mail. “We are trying to get in the first million dollars of contributions very rapidly, to give the campaign its initial capital so important to get off the ground well. If you can send your own check in to us now, it will further that goal.”
The e-mail also warned recipients not to share information with opponents and the media.
“It is imperative this email is not shared with anyone not a supporter of Governor Perry. We are trying to run a tight, disciplined ‘ship,’ with zero interaction with non-supporters or the media. Thank you for your full cooperation with this methodology,” the e-mail read.
Meanwhile, a new independent group, billing itself as the top super political action committee supporting Perry’s imminent campaign, is consolidating backers and getting its effort off the ground.
The Make Us Great Again super PAC is bringing in Texas fundraisers Elizabeth Blakemore and Cynthia Wiedemann, who had previously been working with another pro-Perry super PAC, Americans for Rick Perry.