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Perry re-election? He'd like you to think so


The following ran in the Jan. 29, 2012, edition of the San Antonio Express-News. Political Scientist Cal Jillson provided expertise for this story.

January 31, 2012

By Peggy Fikac

AUSTIN — Texans said they didn't want Gov. Rick Perry to run for president, but he did. Now they say he shouldn't run for re-election — but if Perry's leaning against the idea, don't expect to hear it from him.
Perry spokesman Ray Sullivan repeatedly says Perry may run again for governor in 2014. To say anything else would damage a governor already battered by a presidential run that exposed his weaknesses to a national audience.
Lawmakers have a challenging legislative session looming in 2013, with the potential for many new legislative players. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst will be gone if his U.S. Senate bid is successful, and there could be many new lawmakers.
“The experience and core convictions the governor brings to the Capitol will be very important in 2013,” Sullivan said.
So there's good reason for Perry to avoid looking like a lame duck. But if he's considering another run, there's bad news in a poll conducted for a consortium of newspapers including the San Antonio Express-News and Houston Chronicle by Blum & Weprin Associates, Inc. It's not just last week's widely reported finding that more than half of Texans opposed another Perry run for governor.
Looking more closely at the numbers, more than 60 percent of Texans age 50 and over opposed the idea of Perry running for re-election. So did more than half of college graduates, 75 percent of those with education beyond college and 59 percent of those earning more than $100,000 annually. “Your likeliest voters don't want him to run — the educated, the older, the richer,” said Micheline Blum, who directed the poll. “There isn't any group that wants him, really, to run.”
Only half of Republicans said they wanted Perry to run for re-election, Blum noted: “It's hard to get excited about that.” Forty-one percent of Republicans said Perry shouldn't run again, as did a whopping 68 percent of independents....

SMU political scientist Cal Jillson called the idea ridiculous, saying Perry would have to dive deeply into policy to be considered credible: “I think he has roughly the same problem as Sarah Palin, which is not knowing nearly enough and having no proclivity for study and learning.”

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