Perry's campaign filing sheds light on last days of presidential bid

AUSTIN — In the last three weeks of his presidential bid, Gov. Rick Perry spent more than $3 million and contributions trickled to less than $400,000, according to his latest report filed with the Federal Elections Commission.

Perry raised $20.4 million during his five-month pursuit of the Republican nomination and spent $19.6 million before dropping out of the race Jan. 19, two days before the South Carolina primary.

The latest filing, which covered fundraising and expenditures through January, offered an overview of the final days of the campaign, as Perry invested heavily in consultants, TV ads and extensive travels in the hopes of recovering from a long slump.

"At that stage of the campaign, the governor was in heavy retail mode," said Ray Sullivan, his communications director. "We were in full-throttle television, radio and other direct voter-contact efforts."

Tens of thousands of dollars went to consultants and media strategists based in at least eight states and Washington, D.C. Perry focused much of his efforts in trying to shape a momentum-boosting victory in the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses, but he came in fifth with 10 percent of the vote. He effectively skipped New Hampshire to concentrate on South Carolina.

Perry's fundraising dropped to $389,000 in January, apparently reflecting the view of many potential donors that his candidacy had become a lost cause. By contrast, during the first seven weeks of Perry's campaign, as he rode high in the polls, he raised $17 million.

Perry, who has not shut down his campaign account, had $860,168 at the end of the month, according to the filing.

Star Telegram staff writer Aman Batheja contributed to this report.

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