Perry Johnson’s long-shot bid for the Republican nomination for president has been marked by a series of unconventional campaign strategies and controversies. While Johnson’s conservative credentials and policy proposals have resonated with some voters, his approach to fundraising and campaigning has raised eyebrows within the political community.

One of the key incidents that attracted attention was Johnson’s decision to count t-shirt sales as campaign donations. In an attempt to qualify for the Republican primary debates, which required 40,000 unique donors from 20 distinct states, Johnson sold $1 t-shirts on social media, with each sale being treated as a donation to his campaign. This tactic aimed to meet the donation threshold, but it sparked debates about the integrity of campaign fundraising and the efficacy of circumventing the rules.

Furthermore, Johnson faced criticism for giving away $10 gas cards to anyone willing to make a $1 donation to his campaign.

Who is Perry Johnson?

Beyond the recent incidents and controversies, Perry Johnson’s life and career have been marked by entrepreneurial success and contributions to the field of international quality control standards. Born on January 23, 1948, in Dolton, Illinois, Johnson’s journey to prominence began with his education in mathematics from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, with a minor in economics. He also pursued coursework in the graduate program for psychology at the University of Detroit.

As a businessman, Johnson founded Michigan-based Perry Johnson Registrars Inc., a company specializing in certifying businesses’ compliance with industrial standards. Over the years, his expertise in ISO standards led him to author several books on the subject, including “ISO 9000: Meeting the International Standards.” His contributions to the field have solidified his reputation as a thought leader in quality control and certification.

In addition to Perry Johnson Registrars, Johnson established Perry Johnson Laboratory Accreditation, Inc., a private accrediting body that validates the competency of testing and calibration laboratories, inspection bodies, reference material producers, and sampling organizations using international and national standards.

However, Johnson’s career was not without its challenges. His consulting firm, Perry Johnson, Inc., faced legal trouble in 2000 when it was sued for sending ‘junk faxes’ en masse, resulting in compensatory measures and an advertisement in USA Today outlining the rules for compensation.

Politically, Johnson’s ambitions took him into the realm of Michigan gubernatorial and presidential elections. His attempt to secure the Republican nomination for governor in 2022 faced disqualification due to invalid and fraudulent nominating signatures.

Undeterred, Johnson set his sights on the 2024 Republican nomination for president, campaigning primarily in Iowa and presenting his “Two cents to save America” policy as a solution to the nation’s debt crisis.

Outside his professional and political endeavors, Perry Johnson’s personal life revolves around his residence in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. As a family man, he is married with three sons. Johnson also finds enjoyment in recreational activities, particularly golf and bridge playing. His passion for bridge playing has yielded remarkable achievements, including five victories in National Bridge Championships and six appearances in World Championships.