Monday, Oct. 17, 2011 | 6:58 p.m.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry refused Monday to engage in the fight over the Republican presidential primary calendar that has five of his opponent threatening to boycott the Nevada caucuses.
In an interview Monday with the Las Vegas Sun, Perry remained sanguine about the calendar dispute, saying it’s up to the Republican National Committee to figure out the calendar, not the candidates.
“The Republican National Committee needs to deal with this,” Perry said. “It’ll work its way out, but it’s not something the candidates will be making a decision on. I’m going to compete… wherever they’re having an election.”
Following former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman’s lead, Republicans Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum and Herman Cain have vowed not to campaign in Nevada if the state party doesn’t shift the caucuses date from Jan. 14 to give New Hampshire more room for its primary.
Is it a mistake to ignore Nevada?
“We’ll know that later in the process,” Perry said. “But I’m just campaigning.”
Perry has been quickly building a campaign organization in Nevada since winning the early endorsement of Gov. Brian Sandoval last month.
“We’re like soul mates when it comes to how to run a state,” Perry said of Sandoval’s endorsement.
Perry’s rapid descent in national polls has been tagged to his rocky debate performance last month.
Is he nervous for Tuesday night’s debate in Las Vegas?
“Nah,” he said. “No, I’ll go out there…I think Americans are looking for someone with a record not just the rhetoric.”
More from Perry’s interview with the Sun will be published this week.