Many political observers thought Texas Gov. Rick Perry snuffed out his national future when he blanked on a presidential debate stage and shrugged, "Oops."
But Perry is not one of them.
The outgoing Texas governor, who flopped in the 2012 Republican presidential race, is preparing to try again in the wide-open 2016 race. His calculation, as he told me over a heaping "T-Man" brisket order at Bert's Bar-B-Q in Austin, is that average voters will both relate to his flub and credit him from mounting a political comeback.
The 2016 competition will almost certainly be stiffer than it was in 2012. Instead of just one heavyweight rival (Mitt Romney), he might have to compete for money and votes with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Ohio Gov, John Kasich and former Florida Gov, Jeb Bush, among others. Some advisers think Romney himself could yet jump in.