ADDISON(CBS11) – Before 600 enthusiastic supporters at the Addison Airport, former Texas Governor Rick Perry confirmed what everyone here already knew: He’s running for President for his second time.READ MORE: Grapevine-Colleyville ISD Takes Step In Deciding Fate Of Colleyville Heritage Principal James Whitfield
Some people began chanting, “Run, Rick, Run. Run, Rick, Run.”
Mr. Perry criticized Democrats with a smile. “We are a resilient country, You think about who we are, we’ve been through a civil war, two world wars, we’ve been through the Great Depression, we even made it through Jimmy Carter, we will make it through the Obama years.”
Against the backdrop of a C-130, the same kind of plane he flew in the United States Air Force, Mr. Perry sought to set himself apart from the rest of the ever-growing field of Republican candidates, by emphasizing his military service.
Of the 15 or 16 candidates who have either declared they’re running or have formed an exploratory committee, only one other, U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, has served in uniform.
Up on stage with Mr. Perry, nine retired members of the military including Navy Seals Marcus Luttrell and Pete Scobell.
Taya Kyle, the widow of American Sniper Chris Kyle is also backing the state’s longest serving Governor.
Kyle told CBS11, “I thought if I don’t get up and speak for this real man who I know behind the scenes is very humble and lives a good life with his wife, then I’m not doing my part.”READ MORE: 2-Year-Old Wanders Into Backyard, Drowns In Pool
Political analysts say Mr. Perry faces political hurdles: the abuse of power charges he still faces in Texas and low poll numbers after his “oops” moment during a televised debate that helped sink his first campaign.
CBS-11 analyst John Weekley says Mr. Perry will need to do four things: Avoid making mistakes, do a great job at the televised debates, create a positive message for voters, and raise a lot of money if he wants a second chance from Republicans who remember Mr. Perry’s unsuccessful bid for the White House.
Supporters like John Steinmetz, say they aren’t worried, and repeated what Mr. Perry likes to say. “America loves a great comeback, and anyone who knows Rick Perry he typically fights from the under dog’s corner.”
Steinmetz raised money for Perry the last time and is staying on. He acknowledges challenges, now that Perry faces three other Republicans with Texas ties: Senator Ted Cruz, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, and Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. “We certainly have lost some of those individuals who’ve been with us in the past, but I tell you, we have gained a great deal of others, and I’m excited about where we are going.”
After his announcement in North Texas, Mr. Perry will campaign this weekend in three key states in the early part of the nomination process: Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina.
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