Charleston, South Carolina (CNN) - Rick Perry is telling supporters that he will drop his bid Thursday for the Republican presidential nomination, two sources familiar with his plans told CNN.
The Texas governor will make the announcement before the CNN debate in South Carolina, the sources said.
Tune in Thursday at 8 p.m. ET for the CNN/Southern Republican Presidential Debate hosted by John King and follow it on Twitter at #CNNDebate. For real-time coverage of the South Carolina primary, go to CNNPolitics.com or to the CNN apps or CNN mobile web site.
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The move comes two days before the South Carolina primary and hours before the final debate ahead of the voting, which will take place on CNN Thursday night.
The campaigns of Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum reached out to the Perry campaign Thursday morning in an "aggressive effort" to get his endorsement, according to a source close to Perry.
Perry will indicate his support for Newt Gingrich but will not explicitly endorse him, a source with knowledge of Perry's decision told CNN.
To follow the latest developments on Perry, follow the Ticker's update here.
Perry placed fifth in Iowa and last in New Hampshire - a state in which he did not actively compete - and had said he would launch a bid to win in South Carolina.
"South Carolinians are looking for a conservative candidate that will get this country back working again and I am it," Perry told CNN last week.
On Wednesday, CNN asked Perry about a poll that showed him with only 6% support among likely voters in the South Carolina primary.
He insisted he was continuing with the effort to have a strong showing in the state.
"We're convinced that that's our goal, so the idea that we're going to do anything else, other than try to impact this election is - that's why we got in it. We didn't get in it because it was our purpose in life to be the president of the United States. We did it because it was our purpose to serve this country, and that's what we've been called for, and that's what we're going to continue doing."
When Perry entered the race in August, he immediately did well in the polls. But a series of gaffes, particularly at debates against his rivals, sent his support plummeting.
On Thursday, his campaign website continued to say "help Rick Perry win South Carolina and get America back on track."
Perry's official campaign Facebook page was filled with posts, largely from disappointed voters.
– CNN's Josh Levs contributed to this report.
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if God REALLY told Rick Perry to run for POTUS as he claims, then Perry would have done a lot better than he has. The Almighty doesn't make mistakes. As far as Perry dropping in the polls I don't think it was his gaffes that hurt him as much as his support for giving in-state tuition to the children of illegals that caused him to lose the far right base.....and on top of that called them "heartless". That went over pretty well with some on the left and progressives but NOT with the Tea Party bunch and far right wingers. Plus Perry was not ready for the big stage so to speak. That stuff plays well here in the great red state of Texas, but not for all to see.
It's about time – what a numbskull.
After rushing to the defense of the soldiers who desecrated dead bodies, and calling the Turkish government terrorists, he shouldn't be allowed anywhere near power. Good riddance to him.
About time Perry, hopefully I won't have to hear your name again for quite a while.
If he could have just gotten that George W. Bush endorsement it would have been a different story.
Oh damn. I guess we're stuck with him here in Texas forever. OBAMA 2012
God has spoken
Amen!!! My prayers have been answered!! I took the Bachman approach and prayed Rick Perry away!!!
Dang! Does that mean we Texans have to take him back?
What? You mean we're not going to hear how Perry was going to get Americans "back workin" anymore? I'm not happy with ANY of the Republican nominees (it's like 2008 all over again) but I'm really glad this mealy-mouth buffoon is leaving the campaign. I was no fan of W but Perry makes Bush look like a mental giant.
Then again, Odrama make W look like the greatest thing since sliced bread (and twice as smart). That said, I'd vote for a loaf of sliced bread before I could stomache four more years of Odrama glowering at us, telling us all how awful and lazy America is all the while pushing food stamps like a street corner dealer pushing crack. His utter (and painfully obvious) lack of leadership skills have been clearly demonstrated since he took office.
Four more years of listening to Barry blame Congress, Republicans, hurricanes, earthquakes, ATM's and everything under the sun for his inability to be a fair and effective President? Pass the bread!
Thank God! And good riddance! I still don't know how could he even tought he had a chance.
He is falling in line!!! I'd hope that he finally realized that he is last in the polls but I believe his feelings where hurt that Sarah said she would not vote for him if she was in SC. I wish him the best in TX!!! WHEW
I'm from Austin, Texas and I approve this message. Also, don't come back here Mr. Perry.
This is good news. Now if Romney santorum gingrich, whom are all the same drop out, then we can have a candidate who will actually change something for the better in our nation, Ron Paul. Support peace, support Ron Paul.
Perry really wanted to win this thing. I am worried about him. I hope they have him on suicide watch, just in case.
Tucking tail and running back to Texas to torment those poor people.
Oh yeah, to the safety of his mansion and non-deserved pension.
YAY! Now if we just get him out of Texas.
Not his purpose in life to be president? I thought he claimed that he was called from on high to be president. Maybe I'm thinking about the rest of the field of candidates.
Another one bites the dust!!
Hey Truth and Nothing But the Truth,
Do you have a job, or do you just spend all your time trolling CNN stories and acting like a jerk?
But God called him to be president! God can't be wrong!
I'm sorry to hear this. I fear that we will have either Obama in again or Demacrat that clames he is an republican
Good. He was a loser, anyway. His "Christian Nation" philosophy was offensive and un-American.
Rom-unism – To run for a political office in order to protect your own money...
With Rick Perry out, the GOP has only three losers left to consider.