Our insiders believe that Gov. Rick Perry is running for president in 2012 but don't believe that he should.
The latest Texas Weekly/Texas Tribune Inside Intelligence survey found 58 percent think the governor is in the race. But only 22 percent think he should run, while 70 percent say he shouldn't.
And it doesn't appear that many people think Perry is a real contender. In an open-ended question, his name didn't come up that much. Respondents were asked, "What Republican do you think will have the best shot at the White House in two years, and who do you think will win?"
They came back with a lot of Mitt Romney and John Thune and Sarah Palin but not a lot of Perry. Some of the verbatim responses follow; you can see all of the responses here.
• "I think Mitt Romney will ultimately be the nominee for the party but to win in the general the running mate must be strategic. Perhaps a Haley Barbour or John Thune."
• "John Thune will win Republican nomination and White House."
• "If sanity reins in the land, probably Romney, if insanity reins, Palin. Mitch Daniels is also worth watching."
• "Far too early to tell who has the "best" shot, but Rick Perry, John Kasich, and Chris Christie have good shots should they take the plunge. Dr. Condi Rice is an interesting choice for running mate no matter who takes the nomination."
• "It is way too early to have a clue. 2 years ago at this time we were all ushering in the Age of Aquarius as Obama was being carried to the thrown. It is a different world now and will be in 2 more years."
• "PALIN. The perfect blend of outsiderism, kneejerk conservatism, pop culture icon and salt of the earth ignorance."
• "Given the election 3 weeks ago, Palin has the best shot if the Tea Party movement maintains its strength. Obama will win a 2nd term."
• "Rick Perry"
• "Mitt Romney would have the best shot IMO. Much depends upon how the R's behave over the next 18 months or so. Perry's opening could likely come through a "draft" at the Convention? Not sure "the moderate middle" is ready for another Pres from Texas?"
• "Assuming the Tea Party is still alive and kicking, there is no one better positioned to be the R's candidate than Rick Perry. The mid-term will force Obama to get his groove back and he should win re-election."
• "Jeb Bush probably has the best shot if he can overcome the Bush dynasty effect--he is probably the only one that can beat Obama."
• "Best Shot: John Thune. Likely Nominee: Mitt Romney"
• "Not sure there's a Republican who can win the primary who can also win the White House."
• "Chris Christie. If the unemployment numbers drop significantly and consumer confidence starts improving Obama wins reelection but since that probably won't happen whomever the Republican nominee is will win"
• "Jimmy Carter won in 1976 because he was an absolute Washington outsider, from the opposite party, and from the opposite political philosophy. Rick Perry is the mirror image today of where Governor Carter was then. If the current trends continue, Rick has a chance to win the nomination and the Presidency. Many in Texas don't picture Rick as a possible President, but the path is there."
This week's participants: Cathie Adams, Brandon Aghamalian, Victor Alcorta, James Aldrete, Clyde Alexander, George Allen, Jay Arnold, Jim Arnold, Kip Averitt, Louis Bacarisse, Charles Bailey, Tom Banning, Mike Barnett, Walt Baum, Leland Beatty, Dave Beckwith, Luke Bellsnyder, Hugh Brady, Steve Bresnen, Andy Brown, Blaine Bull, Jose Camacho, Lydia Camarillo, Snapper Carr, Corbin Casteel, William Chapman, James Clark, Rick Cofer, Lawrence Collins, John Colyandro, Harold Cook, Hector Deleon, Kate Doner, Tom Duffy, Scott Dunaway, David Dunn, Jeff Eller, Jack Erskine, John Fainter, Terry Frakes, Wil Galloway, Bruce Gibson, Machree Gibson, Scott Gilmore, Daniel Gonzalez, Jim Grace, Thomas Graham, John Greytok, Michael Grimes, Clint Hackney, Anthony Haley, Wayne Hamilton, Bill Hammond, Sandy Haverlah, Albert Hawkins, Susan Hays, Jim Henson, Steve Holzheauser, Mike Hull, Deborah Ingersoll, Kyle Janek, Cal Jillson, Cliff Johnson, Jason Johnson, Russ Keane, Robert Kepple, Richard Khouri, Heidi Kirkpatrick, Tom Kleinworth, Sandy Kress, Tim Lambert, Pete Laney, Dick Lavine, James LeBas, Randy Lee, Leslie Lemon, Lance Lively, Ruben Longoria, Vilma Luna, Matt Mackowiak, Dan McClung, Kathy Miller, Robert Miller, Lynn Moak, Michael Moore, Steve Murdock, Craig Murphy, Keir Murray, Richard Murray, Sylvia Nugent, Todd Olsen, Gardner Pate, Bill Pewitt, Jerry Philips, Tom Phillips, Wayne Pierce, John Pitts, Royce Poinsett, Kraege Polan, Jay Propes, Ted Melina Raab, Bill Ratliff, Tim Reeves, Chuck Rice, Carl Richie, Kim Ross, Jeff Rotkoff, Luis Saenz, Mark Sanders, Jim Sartwelle, Stan Schlueter, Bruce Scott, Steve Scurlock, Bradford Shields, Christopher Shields, Carol Sims, Ed Small, Martha Smiley, Glenn Smith, Terral Smith, Todd Smith, Larry Soward, Bob Stein, Jeri Stone, Keith Strama, Bob Strauser, Colin Strother, Bruce Todd, Trey Trainor, Lisa Turner, Ken Whalen, Darren Whitehurst, Ellen Williams, Christopher Williston, Michael Wilt, Alex Winslow, Lee Woods, Peck Young and Angelo Zottarelli.