Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) said former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s (R) decision to explore a White House bid wouldn’t affect his own decision about whether to run for president.
“I think Jeb getting into the race will help the field,” he said in a wide-ranging interview posted on CNN.com on Sunday, adding when pressed on the question: “He’s been a successful governor and again having a person of his background in the race makes a lot of sense but it won’t make a difference about whether I get in or not.”
Perry praised the Bush family — who are deeply rooted in Texas politics — and largely dodged a question about whether the two men would compete for donors in the Lone Star State.
He weighed in on a variety of issues during the interview, which did not air because the network used it's program "State of the Union" to cover the missing AsiaAir plane.
He said that Senate Democrats should not have released a report that detailed how the CIA’s interrogation practices sometimes constituted torture, repeating the argument made by many Republicans that the release of the report will put Americans abroad in danger.
“It’s troubling to me as an individual who has sent our National Guard into those combat zones,” he said.
Throughout the interview, he sought to project an air of someone prepared to take on the challenge of running for president. He has said that he was inadequately prepared to run in 2012, which resulted in several well-publicized gaffes.
“There’s a great difference between putting economic policies into a state and being very cognitive and versed in foreign policy, monetary policy or domestic policy for that matter,” he said.
He later suggest that his time as Texas governor will provide a record of leadership that will resonate with the electorate.
“Americans have gotten to see a leader who dealt with the disease of Ebola coming onto our shores, in the first city, and they saw how we dealt with that,” he said.
Perry has not given a specific timeline for deciding on a run. He said in the interview that he needs to move into a new house after leaving the governor's mansion and that he is expecting a new grandchild soon — but that he does not expect that to take away from his preparation for a potential run.