Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Texas Governor Rick Perry can’t seem to stay out of the 2012 speculation machine whether they want to or not. There is news out recently concerning both men and more signs indicating that one or both could launch 2012 bids at some point.
First, report on Rudy Giuliani from the Boston Globe:
NORTH CONWAY, N.H. — Former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani said yesterday that he is pondering whether to run again for the presidency and will decide by the end of the summer. If he does run, he said, he would “do it the right way’’ this time and spend more time on person-to-person campaigning in New Hampshire.
In 2008, Giuliani led in the polls at various times and was sometimes described as the front-runner. But he made little effort in the first-caucus state of Iowa, eventually pulled most of his advertising out of the first-primary state of New Hampshire, and focused on Florida, where his campaign collapsed.
Giuliani placed fourth in the 2008 New Hampshire primary after doing little campaigning here. He vowed to run differently if he decides to jump into the 2012 race.
“The impression was we didn’t spend a lot of time here because we didn’t do it the right way,’’ Giuliani said. “We were spending so much time trying to raise money that we forgot about the politics.’’
This time, Giuliani pledged to run a more retail-style campaign. “Much more talking to people, meeting with them, getting their ideas,’’ Giuliani said.
Giuliani specifically hasn’t ruled it out and seems to actively be making the decision in the public eye. Call it an extended testing the waters phase I suppose. Still, his views haven’t changed on topics such as gay marriage and abortion so he will have the same tough time in the socially conservative states of Iowa and South Carolina if he wants to get any traction.
Next, a report on Rick Perry from the Wall Street Journal:
For months, Texas Gov. Rick Perry has told potential donors and Republican higher-ups he has no interest in running for the White House in 2012.
But over the past two weeks, political advisers and friends say, Mr. Perry has changed his tune on a possible presidential campaign. In private conversations, they say, the three-term governor said he worries that the current GOP contenders have yet to stir real excitement within the party and may struggle when facing President Barack Obama.
“He thinks there is a void [in the current field of candidates], and that he might be uniquely positioned to fill that void,” said one Perry confidant who talked to the governor last week.
In these conversations, the governor has emphasized his own track record in bringing jobs to Texas, which has created more jobs than any other state in recent years. That success, he has told supporters, would position him well in an election that will likely pivot on jobs.
The conversations add detail on Mr. Perry’s thinking. He generated political buzz two weeks ago when he told reporters he planned to “think about” a presidential run after the Memorial Day weekend. He added, with a smile, “But I think about a lot of things.”
I’m less convinced that Perry will ultimately pull the trigger on a 2012 run. He seems reluctant in many ways but I’m just not sure if he wants to leave the Governor’s mansion in Austin. It is possible, however, he could take the long road to a run and essentially play the George Washington card of serving only under a sense of duty to the country despite personal feelings otherwise.