DES MOINES, Iowa — News broke Monday night Rick Perry would stop paying his staffers at his campaign headquarters in Texas as well as in the early caucus and primary states including Iowa.
“We weren’t really surprised on the Rick Perry campaign that something like this would happen,” says Senior Director of Perry’s national campaign, Jamie Johnson.
Johnson says the financial news is just a speed bump and says everything is moving forward as planned.
He said the number one priority for the Perry camp is focusing on Iowa and the campaign will be hitting the ground game hard.
“There`s going to be reshuffling of priorities, reshuffling of attention given to the campaign and I think we are all very confident that going forward we`re going to emerge victorious at the Iowa caucuses next February,” Johnson said.
However, Drake University political expert Tony Gaughan says Perry has a long road ahead.
“The fact that Perry has run short of small contributions is a real problem for him because it shows that although he still has a handful of wealthy donors in his corner, clearly does not have the grassroots support that he needs to win in 2016,” Gaughan said.
Perry’s campaign reported raising about $1.14 million at the end of June and ended the quarter with just over $800,000 on hand.
However, Perry’s three Super PACs have raised close to $17 million and Gaughan says he sees the Super Pac picking up where Perry’s campaign can’t.
“What I would expect going forward is the Perry Super PAC will put the vast majority of its effort into Iowa, not just because Iowa has the first caucuses but also because polling in Iowa is extremely important nationally,” Gaughan said.
Johnson says one of the campaign’s main goals is getting Perry into a prime time debate, something he says will help showcase Perry and build up his campaign.
“We`re very confident that we`re not going to skip a beat in this campaign, this is a comma, not a period,” Johnson said.
Perry has several stops planned in Iowa including the Iowa State Fair next week.