Rick Perry returns to Iowa to headline Polk County GOP fundraising dinner

Texas Gov. Rick Perry will return to Iowa this fall for the first time since the 2012 election cycle, in a move that is sure to fuel rumors that the former GOP presidential candidate will make a second run for the White House.  

Perry will be the guest speaker for the Polk County Republicans’ fall dinner, The Des Moines Register reported Tuesday. The event, the Robb Kelley fundraising dinner, will take place Nov. 7.

“The Polk County GOP is very excited about hosting Governor Rick Perry for his first appearance in Iowa since the 2012 election cycle,” finance director Darrell Kearney told the Register. “We expect a great deal of interest in the fall dinner with Governor Perry, not only in Polk County but from all points in Iowa.” 

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Perry announced earlier this summer that he will not seek reelection next year, leaving the door open to a second presidential bid.

After entering the 2012 presidential race on the day of the Iowa Straw Poll in 2011, Perry’s campaign stumbled hard. After several embarrassing verbal blunders, Perry finished in fifth place in the Iowa caucuses in January 2012, and dropped out of the race.

Several other potential GOP presidential contenders have scheduled visits to Iowa, a politically crucial first-in-the-nation primary state, over the past few months. Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas), among others, stopped by the state earlier this summer.