Rick Perry suspended his 2016 Republican bid on September 11, 2015. "Today I am suspending my campaign for the presidency of the United States," the former Texas governor announced to conservative activists in St. Louis, Missouri. "We have a tremendous field – the best in a generation – so I step aside knowing our party is in good hands, and as long as we listen to the grassroots, the cause of conservatism will be too," Perry said. "I share this news with no regrets. It has been a privilege and an honor to travel this country, to speak with the American people about their hopes and dreams, to see a sense of optimism prevalent despite a season of cynical politics."
James Richard Perry, the longest serving Texan Governor in history, having served three and a half terms in office, emerged for a short period of time as a serious candidate for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012. A chorus of pleas to enter the race by the conservative base, including radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh, finally convinced the former Air Force captain to throw his hat in the ring despite his declared preference to remain as Governor in Texas, which, in his words, is "the best job in the world".
Backed by his state’s sterling job creation record, the dogmatic nationalist and noted social conservative had a blistering start to the race, polling ahead of favorite Mitt Romney and early front runner Michelle Bachmann. However, his great start slowly fizzled as his previously underreported remarks about Texas’ secession from the union and perhaps more damagingly, his immigration policies involving children of illegal immigrants, came into the limelight.
Gov. Perry’s campaign, for all intents and purposes, ended with his “Oops” moment during the November 10, 2011 Republican Presidential Debate in Michigan. Supporters nonetheless rightfully pointed out that unlike his seven other opponents that night, Gov. Perry was the only one without a competitive national level debate experience – a fact that which in no way detracts from his record of accomplishments.