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Gingrich Staffer Bailout Fuels Perry 2012 Rumor

By Frank Heinz
|  Friday, Jun 10, 2011  |  Updated 2:01 AM CDT
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More than a dozen to campaign aides to Newt Gingrich have left his presidential campaign, including two who worked on Gov. Rick Perry's campaigns for governor.

Omar Villafranca, NBCDFW.com

More than a dozen to campaign aides to Newt Gingrich have left his presidential campaign, including two who worked on Gov. Rick Perry's campaigns for governor.

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The departure of a number of high-level Newt Gingrich staffers may add fuel to the fire of a Rick Perry 2012 White House bid, the Austin-American Statesman reports.

Two of those who left Gingrich's camp Thursday were Rob Johnson and Dave Carney. Johnson was Perry's 2010 campaign manager, while Carney is Perry's chief political adviser who continues to say that Perry is not running for president.

Carney said Thursday that there are no plans in place to discuss a Perry presidential run after the legislative session ends.

Perry has long said he wasn't interested in Washington but seemed to change his tune in recent weeks, even saying that he was considering a run for the nation's top office. 

The Associated Press reports that the departures from Gingrich's camp appear to have more to do with Gingrich than any campaign Perry may put together.

"I think the world of him [Gingrich]. But at the end of the day we just could not see a clear path to win, and there was a question of commitment," aide Soctt Rials told The Associated Press.

At the very least, with time on their hands, Johnson and Carney may soon find themselves in the middle of another campaign should Perry decide a future in the White House is worth pursuing.

NBC DFW's Omar Villafranca contributed to this report.

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