Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Wednesday that he still plans a "May/June" timetable to make an announcement about a 2016 presidential run, despite a judge's refusal to dismiss an indictment against him on abuse of power charges.
"We're moving right along as we have intended to," he said at a Wednesday press conference. "And we'll make a decision, or actually make an announcement -- [that's] a better descriptive term, in the May/June timetable just like we had intended to before this."
Fresh off of trips to early primary states, Perry says he's received "a lot of enthusiasm" and "great support" from GOP voters as he ramps up for a second try at the White House.
He told reporters that he believes he will beat back the indictment, charging that "the prosecution's case amounts to the criminalization of politics."
"Every citizen has the right to speak their mind freely without political interference or legal intimidation," he said. "This continued prosecution flies in the face of that protection and it directly assaults the United States Constitution."
On Tuesday, a judge declined to dismiss the case, prolonging the litigation even as Perry works towards a presidential announcement.
Perry was indicted in August on abuse of power charges. The accusation stemmed from his 2013 veto of state funding for a Texas district attorney's office after she was convicted of drunk driving but refused to resign.
Perry's team is appealing the decision.
The former Texas governor has said his use of the veto was within his constitutional authority.
In a statement Tuesday night, Perry's lead counsel , Tony Buzbee, said "Governor Perry acted lawfully and properly exercised his power under the law as Governor to protect the public safety and integrity of government. Continued prosecution of Governor Perry is an outrage and sets a dangerous precedent in our Democracy."
- Carrie Dann