Perry Jumps Into 2012 GOP Presidential Race

Joining the crowded GOP presidential field on Saturday, the Texas governor slammed Obama for "rudderless" leadership.

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Texas Gov. Rick Perry announces his GOP presidential candidacy. (Getty Images)

Texas Gov. Rick Perry joined the crowded GOP presidential field on Saturday, slamming President Obama for "rudderless" leadership, according to the Associated Press

Perry announced his plans before an overflow crowd at the conservative RedState Gathering in South Carolina, an important early primary state. His entry came hours before the release of results from a straw poll in Iowa where the crowded field of candidates was competing.

Shortly before the speech, Perry launched a campaign website and held a conference call with state activists. "I full well believe I'm going to win," he told them.

Perry used his speech to slam Washington and President Barack Obama for "rudderless" leadership and "an unbridled fixation on taking more money out of pockets."