Sen. Ted Cruz has landed a pretty major endorsement.
Fellow Texan and former Lone Star State Gov. Rick Perry is endorsing Cruz, according to Politico.
Perry, who had been part of the crowded GOP field of presidential candidates before he dropped out in mid-September, said that the race is, in his perspective, between Cruz and billionaire Donald Trump.
Perry said in a Politico interview that Cruz is a true conservative, which was important to him as he weighed whom to support for president.
“Of those individuals who have a chance to win the Republican primary, at this juncture, from my perspective, Ted Cruz is by far the most consistent conservative in that crowd,” Perry said. “And that appears to be down to two people."
The former governor is expected to campaign with Cruz on Tuesday in Iowa, which will hold its caucus on Feb. 1.
Cruz and Trump have been battling it out for first place in polls of GOP Iowa voters.
It is the first state that holds a presidential contest, and while it does not always pick the eventual nominee for each party, the results of the caucus are closely watched and seen as a sign of a candidate’s viability.
Cruz is unpopular among many establishment Republicans, who see him as too irreverent and self-absorbed to the detriment, sometimes, of the party.
Cruz wears that view of him as a badge of honor. Others, such as some of his rivals in the presidential race, say it would be a hindrance to him if he became president and remained unable to work with others.
“You’ll have with Ted Cruz that same result of, senators and others in the Washington establishment that are mad at him, find him to be hard to work with, they will find a way to work with him because they know he means what he says he means,” Perry said.
In terms of criticism that Cruz, a first-term senator, is relatively inexperienced at political executive experience, Perry said the firebrand lawmaker would rise to the occasion.
“Gov. Scott Walker, Bobby Jindal, Rick Perry, Jeb’s barely making an impact out there — those are very skilled, very successful, very experienced governors,” Perry said. “But the electorate doesn’t want that. That’s why we have elections, why we democratically select leaders.”
“He knows he’s going to surround himself with people who do have that experience, and I’m very satisfied that on Day 1, he will be ready to be commander-in-chief,” Perry said, according to Politico. “Partly because of the time he’s going to spend in learning what he doesn’t know, but he’s also surrounding himself with people who are extraordinarily capable and wise.”
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