A frayed relationship between Republican presidential candidates Rick Perry and Mitt Romney started unraveling in 2006, Politico's Maggie Haberman reported Sunday.

The bad blood started five years ago when Romney was still governor of Massachusetts. Haberman writes that "at the time, Romney, then the Republican Governors Association chairman, hired veteran media strategist Alex Castellanos to do work for the national group — a direct affront to Perry, since Castellanos was working for Carole Keeton Strayhorn, who was running as an independent against the Texas governor."

An article in Monday's Los Angeles Times examines how Perry's 12-point lead in Gallup's August poll may cause Team Romney to alter its strategy.

"Among Romney's likely shifts: softening his focus on New Hampshire, the first primary state, and starting a more aggressive campaign in Iowa, where the race actually begins. … Also up for discussion inside the Romney camp: an accelerated advertising push, including attack ads against Perry."

The large Monday morning headline at the top of the Politico website bluntly posed a rather straightforward question: "Is Rick Perry Dumb?"

"Doubts about Perry's intellect have hounded him since he was first elected as a state legislator nearly three decades ago," Jonathan Martin wrote for Politico. "In Austin, he's been derided as a right-place, right-time pol who looks the part but isn't so deep — 'Gov. Goodhair.' Now, with the chatter picking back up among his enemies and taking flight in elite Republican circles, the rap threatens to follow him to the national stage."

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