But will Republican caucus attendees and primary voters really care? Or will they be smitten by his populist rhetoric, his contrast to Obama and his claim, supported by Politifact Texas, that Texas has created more jobs since he became governor than any other state.
While there are differences of opinion among strategists about Perry’s appeal in the GOP race, there is unanimous agreement that the Texan would be a risky general election choice for his party.
One conservative, for example, suggested that he would be strong with the party base but would have questionable appeal among independent and moderate voters.
Another said that while he (and many other Republicans) could win in a double-dip recession or with 10 percent unemployment, “Rick Perry could lose every true swing state and spawn a disaster [for his party] down ballot in Great Lakes and coastal suburbs.”
He is simply too conservative, too Texas and too cowboy in a general election, most strategists believe.
Given the weak field, his campaign skills and his relatively broad appeal to Republicans, Rick Perry is a horse to watch for the nomination. But in a general election, the GOP cowboy doesn’t now look at all like the GOP’s savior.
Rep. Bill Cassidy has his blood drawn by Alesha Barbour during a free hepatitis screening in the Rayburn House Office Building hosted by the Congressional Viral Hepatitis Caucus to recognize "National Viral Hepatitis Testing Day."
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