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Perry Seeks Silicon Valley Campaign Investment In East Palo Alto

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Rick Perry

Rick Perry headshot, as Texas Governor and Republican presidential candidate, Simi Valley, California, Sept 7, 2011. (AP)

EAST PALO ALTO (KCBS) – Texas Governor Rick Perry paid his first visit to the Bay Area as a presidential candidate Friday, courting Silicon Valley donors at a fundraiser in East Palo Alto.

The new frontrunner for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination squeezed six California fundraisers into his schedule following the GOP debate Wednesday in Simi Valley.

After three Southern California fundraisers on Thursday, Perry appeared in Bakersfield and the Bay Area before heading over to Fresno on Friday.

The venture capitalists, philanthropists and business executives at the East Palo Alto fundraiser paid anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 for what was billed as a Silicon Valley Lunch at the Four Seasons Hotel.

“I think he’s outspoken, attractive and he’s got the right answers on very serious domestic and foreign issues that we face,” said philanthropist Tad Taube.

The prominent Stanford benefactor said he’s not bothered by Perry’s description of Social Security as a Ponzi scheme and a serious lie to younger Americans counting on it to be there when they reach retirement.

Even before he declared his candidacy, Perry started to make the rounds among California Republicans in the technology sector.

Perry met with 25 Silicon Valley executives shortly before he declared his candidacy, at a roundtable in July hosted by the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.

Rival Mitt Romney returns to Silicon Valley for a fundraiser in Atherton on Sept. 16.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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