Texas Gov. Rick Perry may not be running for president yet, but he's sure doing a good impression of it.
Since announcing he won't seek a fourth term as governor of the Lone Star State, Perry has been visiting early-voting states to extoll the Republican brand and to criticize the Obama administration.
This week, he made his second visit in four months to South Carolina, the earliest primary state in the South, telling The Greenville News
that Republicans have to be more than the "anti-Obama party" if they want to win back Washington.
"We can't be the anti-Obama party. That's not a vision. It's a message, but I don't think it's a wining message," said Perry, who sought the presidency in 2012 only to lose in the Republican primaries.
Although he has yet to publicly declare his intentions for 2016, The Daily Beast
described Perry on Wednesday as "cocksure" as he campaigns around the country as if he's running, but still deflecting questions about whether he'll make a second run at the GOP nomination.
Perry, who has also visited Iowa, another early-voting state, says his main goal is to tout Republican candidates running in 2014, with an emphasis on the job GOP governors have been doing. According to the Daily Beast, Perry says it's "inarguable" that states "doing the best in this country are governed by Republican governors."
On Tuesday, Perry attended the South Carolina Republican Party's annual winter dinner and quickly fired up the crowd by trashing President Barack Obama's policies.
"Don't think for a moment this is going to stop with our healthcare. To quote Rush Limbaugh, the next thing President Obama will say is, 'If you like your guns, you can keep them,''' Perry said, referring to the president's controversial quote about consumers being able to keep their existing health plans.
He said Republicans must push a "positive, hopeful vision for America."
"If you're a blue-collar guy, if you're a single mom that doesn't have a job today, the Republican Party has to put their arm around you and say, 'Listen, we have a plan so that you can take better care of your family, and here it is.''' Perry said.
Perry also plans to headline a GOP event in Kansas early next year.
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