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Perry pads national staff, prepares first Iowa TV ads

His campaign struggling, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is beefing up his campaign staff with veterans of presidential elections and is ready to start running his first television ads in must-win Iowa.

Campaign spokesman Ray Sullivan said the additions have been planned for weeks and represent “a natural progression as we head towards election days” in the early states.

David Carney will continue as Mr. Perry’s top strategist, Mr. Sullivan said. But veteran pollster and campaign hand Tony Fabrizio will also take on a senior strategic role, “not to replace Carney, but work with him,” said a Republican familiar with the move. He spoke on the condition of anonymity ahead of an official announcement.

Additional staff will focus on campaign ads, Mr. Sullivan said.

“It is primarily boosting our media team with folks who’ve been involved in multiple presidential campaigns in the past,” Mr. Sullivan said. “The focus will be on the media side.”


GOP sees jobs program in transportation bill

House Republicans are pitching a six-year transportation construction plan as a major jobs bill that can win bipartisan approval before next year’s election.

Rep. John L. Mica, chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said Monday the most significant obstacle to passing the bill was eliminated when GOP leaders recently agreed to keep spending on highway programs at current levels, even though gas tax revenues are declining. The bill would serve as the House’s major alternative to President Obama’s jobs plan.

Fuel taxes have historically been used to pay for transportation programs.

Mr. Mica said the bill would spend about $285 billion, but would spur far greater investment in roads, bridges, and transit systems through federal loans and loan guarantees.


‘American Grown’: Title of first lady’s book

The publisher of a book Michelle Obama is writing about her White House produce garden says it will be called “American Grown.”

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