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Ross Perot, US billionaire, ex-presidential candidate is dead

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Ross Perot, self-made American billionaire and two-time independent candidate for U.S. presidency, has died after a five-month battle with leukemia, Dallas News reported.

Family spokesman James Fuller says Perot died early Tuesday. He was 89.

Perot was diagnosed with leukemia in February. A massive secondary infection the next month nearly killed him, according to the family.

Perot rose from Depression-era poverty to become one of the America’s richest men as the founder of computer services giant Electronic Data Systems Corp.

In 1992, Perot jumped into the presidential campaign as an independent candidate, challenging President George H.W. Bush and Democrat Bill Clinton.

Perot drew nearly 19 per cent of the vote, the biggest percentage for a third-party hopeful in 80 years. Republicans blamed him for Bush’s defeat.

He founded EDS in 1962 and sold control of it to General Motors for $2.5 billion in 1984. He later founded another company, Perot Systems 26 years later.

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