Texas Gov. Rick Perry is inviting hundreds of well-known Republican donors and policy experts to meetings next month for the purpose of sprucing up his image and setting up a possible 2016 presidential campaign, Politico reported, citing fundraisers and organizers.
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The small-group sessions kick off Tuesday and Wednesday in Austin with a pair of lunches and dinners held in the governor’s mansion wedged between policy briefings at the nearby office of Perry senior adviser Jeff Miller. In all, Perry’s team expects he will meet in person with more than 500 major donors and bundlers from around the country in December as well as a slew of operatives, Republican National Committee members and policy experts.
Perry’s intensive month of foundation-building comes as other prospective Republican presidential candidates – notably former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz – are engaging with the wealthy Texans who for years have been among the GOP’s most significant sources of cash. As the heir to a political dynasty with deep Texas ties, Bush in particular could seriously cut into Perry’s financial base. Bush over the last few months has met with major Texas donors.
After an unsuccessful run at the presidency in 2012, sources told Politico that things would be different if Perry ran again; the three-term governor is expected to tout his greater degree of experience since the last election cycle.
Read the entire Politico story here.