2016 preview? Perry, Cruz at same GOP gathering

WILL WEISSERT, Associated Press

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Two Texans eyeing possible 2016 presidential runs are addressing the kind of top-tier conservative event necessary to build national support.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz are both addressing the RedState Gathering in Fort Worth on Friday.

Perry’s speech helps kick off the day, while Cruz keynotes the afternoon. Both also host receptions for top Republicans, both mainstream and grassroots activists.

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Briefly the 2012 GOP presidential front-runner, Perry raised $17 million in just 49 days. But his campaign flamed out after his infamous “Oops moment” debate brain freeze.

He’s since remade his cowboy image, donning stylish glasses and studying up on foreign and domestic policy.

Meanwhile, Cruz has become a tea party superstar, stirring up controversy on Capitol Hill and enraging top congressional leaders from both parties.