CHARLESTON, S.C. – Rick Perry quit his campaign to be the Republican presidential nominee this morning and endorsed Newt Gingrich.
After declaring his run for president on Aug. 13, Perry vaulted to the top of the polls. Vast amounts of campaign donations were sent to Perry, and it looked like he was off and running. He touted his job creation in Texas, though under closer scrutiny the media were able to show that Perry’s claim was overblown.
Perry’s timely was brilliant as his announcement derailed the momentum of Michele Bachmann, who at the time was leading in the polls in Iowa.
But after a series of “oops” moments during debates and campaign stops, coupled with a homophobic political video that drew an overwhelming number of “dislike” votes on YouTube, Perry stumbled badly in the Iowa Caucuses and virtually disappeared in the New Hampshire primary.
Perry was trailing badly in the polls for Saturday’s South Carolina primary, and with the writing on the wall, the Texas governor called it quits.
Last weekend in Texas, a group of Religious Right leaders, most of whom representing known anti-gay groups, endorsed Rick Santorum over Perry and Newt Gingrich. That, too, helped cement the demise of the Perry campaign.
"There is no viable path forward for me. So today I am suspending my campaign and endorsing Newt Gingrich for president. Newt is not perfect, and who among us is?" Perry said at his news conference.
Jerame Davis, executive director of the National Stonewall Democrats, said Perry had one last "oops" moment:
"Rick Perry has embarrassed himself repeatedly on the campaign trail and his exit from the campaign is no different. As the final act of idiocy in his quixotic bid for the GOP nomination, Perry chose to endorse Newt Gingrich -- a thrice married serial philanderer who demanded an open marriage with one of his previous wives. It just goes to show how closely he holds his much touted 'family values.' Oops!"