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Perry Loses Iowa Campaign Chairman

The top Iowa Republican behind Rick Perry's presidential campaign announced Monday that he was leaving the operation.

Rick Perry on campaigns in Kimballton, Iowa on August 17, 2015.

Editor's note: This story has been updated throughout.

WASHINGTON — The top Iowa Republican behind former Gov. Rick Perry's presidential campaign announced Monday that he was leaving the operation. 

Sam Clovis, a well-known conservative radio personality in Iowa, told The Associated Press he had stepped down as Perry's state chairman. 

"I feel bad for the campaign and I feel bad for Governor Perry because I think he’s a marvelous human being, he’s a great man and it was my honor to be a part of this, but it was just time to move on," Clovis told The Washington Post on Monday.

"Gov. Perry remains committed to competing in Iowa, as well as South Carolina and New Hampshire, and there are many people across the country who continue to work to elect Rick Perry as president," said Perry spokeswoman Lucy Nashed. "We wish Sam the best in his next endeavor."

This month, Perry's campaign confirmed that it did not have the funds to pay staffers, though it said many were staying on as volunteers.

But on Monday, Breitbart News reported that the campaign was beginning to put people back on the payroll. Nashed confirmed the news to the Tribune. 

Iowa staffers flanked Perry on a swing through Iowa last week, although Clovis was not visibly on the trail with the former Texas governor.

Beyond financial concerns and the loss of Clovis, the upcoming Sept. 16 CNN debate looms over Perry. He narrowly missed the cut for the Fox News top-tier debate earlier this month and was relegated to an undercard debate. 

Despite those troubles, he has retained the backing of a well-funded super PAC positioned to spend heavily on the airwaves on his behalf. 

Patrick Svitek contributed to this report.

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Politics 2016 elections Rick Perry