Sixth place finisher Congresswoman Michele Bachmann dropped out of the race the next day, and many expected Perry to follow. His post-caucus speech said as much: the conciliatory tone and misty eye, the round of applause for volunteers who had given it their all; and his announcement to "return to Texas..." and "with a little prayer and reflection, I'm going to decide the best path forward."
Many analysts declared the Perry campaign dead, and some campaign staffers hugged goodbye. His communications director Ray Sullivan spoke with press following what many believed was the candidate's concession speech, telling the Des Moines Register:
Sullivan said the decision on whether Perry's campaign will move forward will depend on a calculus of the Iowa results, available resources and a campaign analysis of Perry's odds in South Carolina.
“I suspect the earliest that we will speak further on the subject is Thursday,” he said
Twelve hours later Perry was tweeting (nice running gear!) that he was off to South Carolina, and Sullivan was left to explain again. Fresh ads appeared this morning on YouTube, and although he'll mostly skip New Hampshire, Perry will participate in this weekend's GOP debates.
Off to the South we go.