If there is a single politician in Texas who holds the record for eliciting the most rumors, it has to be Governor Rick Perry. Part of it is because he is our state' longest serving governor, but part is because he also seems to revel in unpredictability. So, as far what the Governor will actually announce on Monday regarding his “exciting future plans” no one seems to know for sure, or at least those who do are certainly keeping quiet, and that only leaves one thing — speculation.
Having grown up around the Capitol with my ear to the ground I tend to get good info early and often but some of the rumors I have heard about Perry's plans are a big stretch even for him. We know from previous statements that he is interested in running for president again, but according to what Perry has insinuated about Monday that is not likely to be a part of the announcement. In fact Perry said that if all goes well he may have another announcement “later in the year, if there's more expansive plans”. It seems mostly likely that this later announcement may address his presidential (or vice-presidential?) ambitions.
If the Gov. does have later plans to run for president, that means that whatever new gig he's lined up for himself would likely be played on the national stage. Most of the rumors tend to support this idea of Perry crisscrossing the US raising money for conservative causes, if not candidates. At this point the least surprising news that could come out on Monday is that Perry will not seek re election for Governor. He has stood by as Attorney General Greg Abbott has postured himself as the frontrunner for his replacement and the AG has amassed an $18 million war chest, several times more than the Governor himself. Not only that, but campaign opponents rarely share staff and consultants.
Regardless of the path he has chosen Governor Perry doesn't seemed concerned with public opinion polls. Although the latest show him out front should he run for reelection, most polled would still prefer he not run at all — for Governor or for President. One thing's for sure, we don't expect him to start listening now.
The best option for Democrats would be for this unpopular governor to go head to head with someone in the GOP primary who has a lot more money than he does. That idea has some Democrats drooling. Either way if this is his farewell announcement he did leave a little parting gift with the progressives of the state. Throwing a match on and igniting the Democratic powder keg, during an otherwise quiet summer has been the best thing progressive organizers in this state could have ever asked for. Makes you wonder if Perry is just peacin' out, or if some how it's all by design, guess we shall see.
So without further adieu here are some of the “most credible” rumors I have heard about the future of Rick Perry.
Rick Perry will replace Wayne Lapierre as VP of the NRA.
Rick Perry will head a conservative “think tank”.
Rick Perry will announce a book deal.
Rick Perry will unveil a new charity.
Rick Perry will lead a Super PAC to recruit and elect conservative candidates.
And the winner for the most outlandish and juiciest rumor I heard from someone working in the Capitol has to be:
Rick Perry as Chancellor of the UT system. Wouldn't that be great? Between being an Aggie, his relationship with UT Austin and the recent protests at the Capitol we know orange has to be his least favorite color.
Have you heard anything, or perhaps have a good suggestion? Tweet to: #PerryRumorMonday.
You can follow me on Twitter at: @joethepleb.