Perry supporters beefing up presence in Iowa 

Supporters of Texas Gov. Rick Perry have been expanding their presence in Iowa, hiring staff, collecting signatures and soliciting support for a possible presidential run.

Bob Schuman, a California businessman and consultant who started Americans for Rick Perry, said that the organization -- which is not affiliated with the governor's office -- had raised $400,000 since it began seven weeks ago.

The group sought a presence in next month's Ames Straw Poll, and it wanted to take out a booth and purchase 2,000 tickets for supporters, even though Perry's name is not on the ballot. But the Iowa GOP, which runs the event, declined and eventually told them they couldn't even hand out flyers in the parking lot.

Schuman said that he thinks Perry has until Labor Day to announce a presidential run, given that August is a slow month and people aren't paying much attention right now. But he thinks Perry won't be able to wait much past then.

If and when Perry decides to run, Schuman said the group will change its name so as to not create confusion with the official campaign. But it still plans to be active.

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