While Republican governors like Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee are gaining attention for their presidential bids, Texas Governor Rick Perry is starting to make waves, too.
In his recent address to the California Republican convention, he attacked the usual suspects -- Al Gore, Nancy Pelosi, and Hillary Clinton. But, more interesting to me (as the San Francisco Chronicle reports), Perry also decried the states "bankrupt liberal political philosophy."
... Because he spoke after California Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger, this was interpreted -- by some -- as criticism of Schwarzenneger.
Aside from the forcefulness of his address, it is also interesting to note that Perry plans to step up his travel schedule in '08. The Houston Chronicle notes:
Perry promised more of the same in 2008.
"I may not be on the ballot, but I will campaign next year like I am, in Texas, in California, and anywhere else I can spread the word," he said in his speech.
If that holds true, it will be an unusually active national schedule for the GOP governor, said Ray Sullivan, who once worked for him and is close to the Perry camp.
... Political scientist Bruce Buchanan of the University of Texas at Austin said he thinks Perry is working to build his national profile.
Regardless of his travel plans, Perry's national visibility will also likely increase, as he is rumored to be in line to become Chairman of the Republican Governor's Association (RGA) -- a position that often serves as a stepping-stone toward a presidential bid.
Sources tell me the governor has close relationships with both Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee. One can easily imagine that the endorsement of a conservative Texas governor might help Giuliani in his bid to seal the nomination.
Should Giuliani's wooing work, a Perry VP nomination is certainly imaginable.
Stay tuned ...