Ross Perot, American 2-Time Presidential Hopeful, Dead at 89

Ross Perot

Former President George H.W. Bush, left, talks with independent candidate Ross Perot as Democratic candidate Bill Clinton stands aside at the end of their second presidential debate in Richmond, Va., on October 15, 1992. He sold control of it to General Motors for $2.5 billion in 1984.

His family said Perot died of leukemia Tuesday at the age of 89.

Although his second presidential bid in 1996 faltered and the Reform Party he founded crumbled once he scaled back his involvement, the ideological themes he built it on would later be adopted by Donald Trump to bring the establishment of the Republican Party as it existed for decades crashing down. He used charts and graphs to make his points, summarizing them with a line that became a national catchphrase: "It's just that simple". Another billionaire populist, Trump first flirted with a run for the presidency in 2000, seeking the nomination of the Reform party, which Perot founded after his first campaign and led in his second.

In the end, Perot earned almost 20 percent of the popular vote, the largest total for a third-party candidate in more than 50 years. At the time, most other politicians focused on the broadcast news earlier in the evening. Perot lived a century in 89 long years of his life.

Perot left behind his wife Margot, five children, and 16 grandchildren.

"In business and in life, Ross was a man of integrity and action", his family's statement said.

Perot was also an active philanthropist through his Perot Foundation. Republicans and Democrats alike made light of Perot's criticisms, but in the years after the treaty was enacted, Perot was ultimately proven correct. He was shut out of presidential debates when organizers said he lacked sufficient support.

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Perot was born in Texarkana, eastern Texas in 1930, during the Great Depression.

EDS first sold stock to the public in 1968, and overnight, Perot was worth $350 million. He did not take part in presidential debates and got just 8% of the vote. We were on the George Bush Turnpike and a number came up on my cell phone and said private call and I answered it.

Ross Perot Jr said his father ran for president because he loved his country.

Like Trump, Perot was not at all afraid to say exactly what he was thinking. His campaign became a cultural argument against Mexicans as much as it was an economic one for blue-collar Americans. He vehemently opposed the 1990-1991 Persian Gulf War and lobbied Congress to vote against the war resolution.

He would eventually be honored for this activism, receiving an award from then-Secretary of Veteran Affairs James Peake in 2009.

On Tuesday, the younger Bush said "Texas and America have lost a strong patriot" who "epitomised the entrepreneurial spirit and the American creed".

H. Ross Perot during H. Ross Perot At "On Wings of Eagles" Press Conference in Los Angeles, California, United States.

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