Gov. Rick Perry appears to be inching even closer to a presidential run. Earlier today the Texas governor vetoed legislation that would require Amazon.com and other online retailers to collect sales tax from customers in the state. This could be an early warning sign that he plans to enter the 2012 race.
By vetoing the bill, Perry risks angering many of his constituents in the state, as well as other Texas Republican lawmakers who supported it. But the veto will also bolster his national reputation as a small-government, anti-tax conservative.
As Perry has shown more interest in entering the presidential race, enthusiasm for his candidacy has grown.
“I think Gov. Perry could well get in,” Bill Kristol predicted on Fox News Sunday, praising job creation in Texas during the governor’s term and describing him as a “Tea Party favorite.” The Republican nominee needs to have a proven record and be appealing to grassroots conservatives, Kristol said. “Perry checks both those boxes at once,” he said. “I think Perry could be formidable if he got in.”
Republicans are anxious to find a candidate they can get excited about, and Perry’s veto may indicate that he is becoming excited at the prospect too.