GOP mega-donor Perry dies

AUSTIN, Texas – A family friend says Republican mega-donor Bob Perry, who built a Houston real estate empire and became among the most prolific political fundraisers in the country, has died. He was 80.

Former Texas state Rep. Neal Jones said late Sunday that Perry died Saturday night. He said Perry “passed away peacefully in his sleep” and did not offer further details.

Perry was a fixture of GOP fundraising in Texas – and nationally – dating back to former President George W. Bush’s Texas gubernatorial races in the mid-1990s. His largesse included giving big in 2004 to the Swift Vets and POWs for Truth campaign that sought to discredit then-Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry.

Perry was also a prominent financial supporter of Texas Gov. Rick Perry, but was not related.

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