Rick Perry Launches Second Presidential Bid

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Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry has joined the crowded Republican presidential race. He will seek the White House for the second time in 2016.

This time, well, he has nowhere to go but up, too ...

Four years after his first presidential campaign was crushed by the weight of his epic debate gaffe and stump speech mishaps, he is back in the race.

As a governor who spent 14 years presiding over Texas, he has spent the intervening years recovering from health problems and boning up on policy.

Now he believes he's earned a second chance.

He'll formally launch his run for the 2016 GOP nomination at Addison Airport, outside Dallas, in an 11:30 a.m. speech. But he's already done so online.

Perry said in a video announcement earlier:

"If we're going to revive this American dream again we need a president who provides leadership that transcends the petty partisanship we've seen."

"Someone that's been tested and a president who tells the American people the truth. We need a president who bridges the partisan divide."

"We must do right and risk the consequences."

Today, Perry will be flanked by a list of military veterans, including several Navy SEALs and Taya Kyle, the widow of American Sniper Chris Kyle.

This is a clear strategy by Perry to highlight his five years in the Air Force as something that sets him apart from the crowded, talented field.

Kyle vouched for Perry in an email to supporters:

"I got to know Rick and Anita Perry outside of the public eye, where I've had an up-close view of their humility and commitment to doing the right thing."

"Regardless of who gets the credit. Believe me, they are a breath of fresh air in a political system full of people playing games and twisting the truth."

Political watchers may remember - though Perry would likely wish they'd forget - how badly he struggled during his 2012 campaign for the White House.

He entered the GOP race to great conservative fanfare, surging past Mitt Romney to the top of the polls before any primary votes had been cast.

Then the wheels fell off in epic fashion.

There was a New Hampshire speech where voters wondered aloud if Rick Perry was drunk, and may more blunders along the campaign trail.

The "oops" moment in a debate, when Perry couldn't remember the name of one of the federal agencies he wanted to abolish, was the coup de grace.

Almost four years later, he enters the race struggling to make amends, and make inroads in a GOP field of contenders that is unquestionably tougher.

Here's a look at who he's up against:

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