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The Midday Brief: Aug. 17, 2011

Your afternoon reading: Perry dials back rhetoric; poll puts Perry at 18 percent in New Hampshire; report says drought has cost state at least $5 billion

Gov. Rick Perry lunches with business leaders at the Star Restaurant in Dubuque, Iowa, on Aug. 16, 2011.

Your afternoon reading:

  • "On the ballot Romney remains in a strong position. He leads all candidates with 36% of the vote. However, Perry, making his first appearance in the NH Journal poll, debuts with a strong 18%. Ron Paul continues to impress despite relatively little media attention with 14%. And Bachmann earns 10%. All other candidates were in single digits." — New Hampshire poll: Romney rocks, Perry pops, Bachmann doesn’t bounce, NH Journal
  • "The speech by Gov. Rick Perry of Texas to announce his presidential candidacy on Saturday got generally favorable reviews, but it did not take long for some influential Republicans to become overtly skeptical about what Mr. Perry might do for the party in November." — Pondering Perry’s Electability, FiveThirtyEight
  • "Rick Perry has counted on the staunch support of Texas conservatives during his two decades of statewide triumphs in Texas. He’s an anti-tax, anti-spending, anti-regulation, anti-Washington stalwart. … Then why are some conservative bloggers and activists warning others on the political right about a Perry presidential candidacy?" — Ten things about Rick Perry that may worry some conservatives, Texas on the Potomac
  • "Rick Perry is using religion to court Spanish-speaking voters, too. In addition to his affiliation with the  New Apostolic Reformation group and The Response prayer rally in Houston, Perry also rallied this summer, largely unnoticed, with the pro-life nonprofit Manto de Guadalupe (or Mantle of Guadalupe), created by Mexican model and actor Eduardo Verastegui." — Perry Courts the Latino Religious Right Too, The Texas Observer
  • "The Texas drought, lasting since fall 2010, has cost $5.2 billion to agriculture, a report said. This is now the most expensive year of drought, according to Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service economists." — Report: State’s drought losses top $5 billion, Austin American-Statesman

New in The Texas Tribune:

  • "A day after the White House and even some fellow Republicans admonished Gov. Rick Perry for warning of potentially 'treasonous' acts by the U.S. Federal Reserve chairman, the governor responded — more politely this time." — Swagger In Check (a Bit), Perry Responds to Obama

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