GREENSBORO, North Carolina — Texas Gov. Rick Perry says he has no regrets about his failed run for the White House.
"People ask me 'what was it like to run for the presidency of the United States?' and I tell them, I say let me tell you, I was the frontrunner for a while and it was the three most exhilarating hours of my life," he quipped to delegates at the North Carolina Republican Convention.
His penchant for self-deprecating humor and one-liners was on full display, even as he tried to score points at President Barack Obama's expense.
"Three and a half years, nearly 100 rounds of golf. Barack Obama has exploded the debt in this country. He has passed a stimulus program that grew government and not the economy. He socialized health care and he armed Mexican drug cartels," Perry said.
"Admit it America, 2008 was our national “oops” moment," he added — a reference to his infamous debate gaffe.
Perry, a one-time "yell leader" at Texas A&M, put his sports knowledge to use firing up the base, closing his speech by invoking the local team colors.
"And whether you are Tar Heel blue or Blue Devil blue, we all agree that this next election we need North Carolina to be Wolf Pack red," he said, as the audience rose to their feet. "Let’s get it right, let’s win this election. Let’s go do everything that we have to do to deliver North Carolina for Mitt Romney and the Republican Party."