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2012: Perry joke on secession: 'We can leave anytime we want'

BACHMANN: Per NBC’s Jamie Novogrod, Bachmann will make only one campaign stop today, to a company called Competitive Edge, in Clive, Iowa. A printing and branding business, the company’s website says it offers “imprinted promotional products and custom imprinted products for all of your advertising specialty needs.” The campaign has also released the schedule for the start of next week’s tour of South Carolina. Bachmann will appear in Spartanburg ,and Greenville, S.C., on Monday.

Speaking of next week, the campaign has pulled out of a town hall event that had been planned in Windham, NH, Sunday night. The Eagle Tribune, a North Boston-area newspaper, runs a piece on the cancelation. According to the newspaper, the campaign attributes the move to travel issues, and tells local Republican Party members it will return to the Granite State after Labor Day.

The Des Moines Register reports that Iowa’s Tea Party leader, Ryan Rhodes, has endorsed Bachmann.

And the Newsweek controversy continues to provoke conversation.  At Salon, liberal writer Joan Walsh writes the photo isn’t sexist, disagreeing with the National Organization for Women.

GINGRICH: GOP 12: “When asked about his viability as a candidate, Newt Gingrich points to last week's ‘Eastern Iowa Picnic and Rally to Meet the Next President.’ ‘I think of the people who have been active, if you go and look at the press reports of the Johnson County picnic Friday night -- where every single reporter from Fox News to the Des Moines Register to the local papers to MSNBC – every one of them said that with Pawlenty and two other candidates there that I clearly dominated the three of them, and I clearly was the winner of that particular event.’ The other two candidates were Rick Santorum and Thad McCotter.”

HUNTSMAN: He gets the endorsement today of Jeb Bush Jr., who writes an entry on Huntsman’s campaign blog.

PERRY: Per NBC’s Carrie Dann, the Texas Tribune digs up a 2009 interview in which Perry, talking Texas history to a group of tech bloggers in his office, jokes about secession. “When we came into the nation in 1845, we were a republic, we were a stand-alone nation,” the governor can be heard saying. “And one of the deals was, we can leave anytime we want. So we’re kind of thinking about that again.”

Perry did a fundraising letter for Citizens Against Government Waste, in which he slams government spending on Amtrak and arts programs.

Gallup finds Perry would debut in second place in the 2012 field and would boast the highest "positive intensity" score of any candidate.

Perry last night to a reporter who staked out a fundraiser he attended in Austin: “I’m back in the boots!”

Perry strategist Dave Carney talked to the Des Moines Register about accusations that the governor's suspected rollout is stepping on Iowa's straw poll: "Many of the fine folks have been in the race for months and some years and have been waging a pitched battle leading to this point. Their efforts will be rewarded Saturday in Ames."