Ross Perot, Billionaire and Former Presidential Candidate, Dead at 89

Ross Perot, Billionaire and Former Presidential Candidate, Dead at 89

Ross Perot was a self-made billionaire businessman who made headlines as he ran for president as an independent in 1992 and 1996. A nationwide Gallup poll in July 1992 found Perot to be the front-runner for president with 39 percent, Bush at 31 percent, and then-Governor Bill Clinton of Arkansas at 25 percent.

Ross Perot is shown on a screen in a paid 30-minute television commercial, during a media preview in Dallas on October 16, 1992.

"This was possibly my first example of government waste", he wrote. Perot, while winning no electoral votes, nevertheless attracted significant support from every region of the country.

Henry Ross Perot was born in Texarkana on June 27, 1930.

After his naval service, he joined IBM as a computer salesman in 1957.

Following his second and final bid for the presidency, Perot served as president and CEO of Perot Systems Corporation, which he founded in 1988.

However, Perot's ideas on trade and deficit reduction remained part of the political landscape. In the beginning there was Tom Watson of IBM and Ross Perot. He and GM soon parted company, however.

Nine years later, Dell Incorporated bought Perot Systems for US$3.9 billion, which was a net gain of about US$400 million for the Perot family.

Perot was featured on the 1968 cover of Fortune Magazine as the "fastest, richest Texan". Republicans and Democrats alike made light of Perot's criticisms, but in the years after the treaty was enacted, Perot was ultimately proven correct.

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He championed patriotic causes, and in the late 1970s and 1980s claimed that hundreds of missing United States soldiers had been left behind and imprisoned after the Vietnam War.

Perot paved his own trail to history. In 1979, when two EDS employees were taken hostage during a revolution in Iran, he organized and paid for a successful private mission called Operation Hotfoot to rescue the men and bring them home.

Paste will have more on Perot Wednesday. This episode was later turned into a book and a Hollywood movie.

PEROT: We can not spend our children's money. He still was engaged in bettering the conditions of USA prisoners in the Vietnam War.

Perot chose to focus his 1992 campaign on domestic and not foreign policy. We hope the legend at last rests in peace. He blamed both major parties for running up a huge federal budget deficit and letting American jobs to be sent to other countries.

The candidate, while seeking to take advantage of these concerns, had nothing to offer any section of workers except reactionary economic nationalism. Perot coined the phrase "giant sucking sound" as the result of good American manufacturing jobs being shipped off to Mexico (not the other NAFTA partner, Canada). Perot lived a century in 89 long years of his life. Just as abruptly, he reentered on October 1, in time to qualify for three televised debates. Perot's third daughter, Carolyn, lives with her husband in a $9 million mansion. Perot $5600 directly to the campaign. President Clinton was reelected.

A month later, however, Perot stunned the political world by withdrawing from the race. He supported Republican candidates Bush in 2000 and Romney in 2012, but sat out the 2016 campaign that propelled Donald Trump into the White House.

That, his rapid-fire and colorful language, and $65 million of his own money, helped propel Perot from unlikely fringe candidate in the 1992 Presidential election to winning 19% of the popular vote in a contest against incumbent George H.W. Bush and the victor, Bill Clinton.

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