Republican Hopefuls Perry and Sandoval Visit Israel

Rick Perry has made the trip several times before; for Sandoval, who is studying desert farming techniques in the Negev, it's a first; both are tapped for 2016 presidential runs.

JTA
JTA
JTA
JTA

U.S. governors Rick Perry of Texas and Brian Sandoval of Nevada, Republicans tapped for 2016 presidential runs, are visiting Israel.

Perry, who has visited Israel multiple times in the past, was in the country this week to announce the planned Nazareth campus of Texas A&M University. But he also had meetings with Israeli leaders, including on Monday with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He will meet later this week with President Shimon Peres.

Perry is being accompanied by Fred Zeidman, a major GOP campaign donor, and Matthew Brooks, the director of the Republican Jewish Coalition.

Sandoval is making his first visit to Israel, where he is studying desert farming techniques. The rising latino star of the Republican party met with Peres on Sunday.

Perry failed in his bid for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, but he has a strong fundraising base and will not run next year for a fourth term as governor, freeing him to devote himself to a ’16 bid.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry visits the Western Wall in Jerusalem on Oct. 22, 2013. Photo: JTA (Courtesy of the Office of the Rabbi of the Western Wall)

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