When Rick Perry dropped out of the presidential race last year, he endorsed Ted Cruz’s candidacy. But once Donald Trump wrapped up the nomination, Perry, the loyal Republican Party guy, got behind Trump. When Ted Cruz didn’t endorse Trump at the GOP convention, Perry was one of the many Republicans not happy with what Cruz did.
Perry was so unhappy with Cruz, he apparently went to Representative Michael McCaul and urged him to challenge Cruz in a primary for the 2018 election.
Late this summer, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry strongly encouraged U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul to challenge U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz’s re-election bid in 2018, according to GOP sources.
The encouragement, which was relayed to The Texas Tribune by two Republican sources familiar with the correspondence, came around the same time that McCaul, an Austin Republican, emerged as a top potential challenger to Cruz’s re-election efforts, amid an outcry among many grassroots conservatives over Cruz’s decision not to endorse presidential nominee Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention.
A Perry spokesman wouldn’t say whether the former governor made such overtures to McCaul, instead praising the six-term member of Congress.
“Rick Perry holds Michael McCaul in the highest esteem,” Perry spokesman Stan Gerdes wrote in an email.
That isn’t a confirmation, but it is also not a denial.
For some time, Rick Perry has been floated as a potential primary challenger to Ted Cruz, but the former Governor has repeatedly said he doesn’t want the job, preferring the role of an executive over a legislator.
There is a question as to whether or not Perry is serious or if Texas Republicans are merely issuing a warning to Senator Cruz that he’s not entirely safe.
Time will tell.