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What's Behind Rick Perry's Campaign Finance Problems

Texas Tribune
Rick Perry announces his presidential candidacy June 4, 2015 in Addison

Rick Perry is still on the campaign trail amid financial problems. Low fundraising has left the former governor unable to pay his staff, although his campaign manager says only one staff member has left, so far.

Abby Livingston is Washington Bureau Chief for the Texas Tribune. She says  Perry ran into two major problems.

Highlights from Abby Livingston’s interview:

Why Perry’s having a tough time raising money:  This is a better field than four years ago. He’s competing against much better candidates and many of them have ties to the Lone Star State. You have Jeb Bush, whose family practically invented modern political fundraising in Texas, you have Ted Cruz, and then you have other candidates who don’t have ties to Texas who’ve made inroads into the Texas donor world. So it’s a world for Perry who’s a much better candidate (than four years ago), but it’s a much more difficult field.

There’s a super PAC standing by to help: He has some very, very smart operatives in Mississippi who are on his side, who are running this super PAC. It raised about 17 million dollars, as of June 30. And they say they’ve been raising money since the news came out that Perry is in financial trouble. But they cannot coordinate with Governor Perry. They have to run their separate operation, but they say they are willing to assume responsibilities that typically the candidate’s campaign has traditionally done in presidential races.

For more information:

How Rick Perry Ended Up In The Financial Hole 

Sam Baker is KERA's senior editor and local host for Morning Edition. The native of Beaumont, Texas, also edits and produces radio commentaries and Vital Signs, a series that's part of the station's Breakthroughs initiative. He also was the longtime host of KERA 13’s Emmy Award-winning public affairs program On the Record. He also won an Emmy in 2008 for KERA’s Sharing the Power: A Voter’s Voice Special, and has earned honors from the Associated Press and the Public Radio News Directors Inc.