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0000017a-15d9-d736-a57f-17ff8e6d0001Rick Perry served as governor of Texas from 2000 to 2015, making him the longest-serving governor in that state's history.A fifth-generation Texan, Perry attended Texas A &M University and served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force, piloting missions from 1974 to 1977 and attaining the rank of captain. After his service, Perry went into business with his father, a cotton farmer.Perry was first elected as a Democrat to the Texas House of Representatives in 1984. After working on Al Gore's first presidential campaign, he switched parties, and in 1990, won the office of Texas Agricultural Commissioner after a controversial campaign managed by Karl Rove. In 1998, he ran for lieutenant governor and won.In 2012, Perry ran in the Republican Presidential Primary. After placing fifth in the Iowa caucuses, he skipped the New Hampshire Primary and pulled out of the race in January 2012. Perry suspended his 2016 presidential campaign on Sept. 11, 2015.

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry Announces 2nd White House Bid

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry addresses the Rick Scott's Economic Growth Summit in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Tuesday. Perry announces his 2016 run for the Republican presidential nomination today.
Phelan M. Ebenhack
Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry addresses the Rick Scott's Economic Growth Summit in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Tuesday. Perry announces his 2016 run for the Republican presidential nomination today.

Updated at 1:00 p.m. ET

Rick Perry, the former governor of Texas and 2012 Republican candidate for president, formally announced a second bid for the White House.

At a rally in Addison, Texas, this afternoon, Perry told a group of supporters: "Today I am announcing that I'm running for the presidency of the United States of America."

He decried that "weakness at home has led to weakness abroad" and that "Our economy is barely growing."

"No decision has done more harm than the president's decision to withdraw troops from Iraq," Perry, the longest-serving governor in Texas' history, said.

It is "time to reset the relationship between government and citizen," he said.

He also promised, "on day one" if elected president to roll back Obama administration regulations and to approve construction on the Keystone XL Pipeline.

"Homeland security begins with border security," he said.

Perry, who is currently under indictment in his state's capital for abuse of power, formally announced hours after his website, relaunched with a campaign logo and a slick video heavy on military imagery, in which the candidate touts his experience as governor (and as "someone that's been tested").

In the video on the site, Perry says, "We don't have to accept the weakness abroad that we're seeing today. We don't have to accept the slow economic recovery that we see here at home."

Perry, whose campaign four years ago imploded after a series of embarrassing gaffes culminating with the infamous "oops" moment during a televised debate, has been busy reshaping his image. NPR's Jessica Taylor, reporting last week from Iowa, where Perry was making an appearance, says he "looks more at ease" than during the previous campaign:

"[Gone] are the pressures of office, leaving the governor's mansion after 14 years this January. He now wears dark-rimmed glasses, which have become his trademark on campaign literature, and more comfortable dress shoes instead of cowboy boots.

"He talks of optimism and a time of new birth in America in his stump speech — but that, too, is what he needs to save his own political hopes. He's currently mired in low single digits in state and national polling."

The New York Times adds:

"[Whether] Mr. Perry has done enough to repair the damage from his failed run in 2012 and to thrust himself out of the second tier of candidates he finds himself in remains unclear. Even in Texas, Mr. Perry has already lost crucial support to some of his rivals. Steve Munisteri, a former chairman of the Republican Party of Texas, has been heading up Senator Rand Paul's presidential campaign in Texas. Many of the grass-roots Tea Party activists in Texas have flocked to Mr. Cruz, while some of those in the more mainstream Texas Republican establishment are supporting Mr. Bush, whose son, George P. Bush, is the state's new land commissioner."

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.
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