Glass to Rick Perry: "That is not leadership - to run away like a scared little boy from someone who just wants to engage you in debate."
HUMBLE - With a dash for the door after delivering a speech, Gov. Rick Perry avoided a confrontation with Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Kathie Glass.
Glass had said she was going to confront Perry over not debating her and other candidates for governor. But she waited until Perry finished his speech to the Texas Conservative Coalition 10th Amendment Town Hall meeting at the Humble Civic Center. Seated front row center, Glass raised a finger into the air and charged in Perry's direction. But he was off the stage in an instant. Event organizers and the Department of Public Safety security detail had created a wall that kept Glass from getting close to Perry. Men stepped in her way as she came forward. The closest she got was about five feet from the governor.
"If you can't stand up to Kathie Glass, how can you stand up to the federal government?" Glass shouted after Perry as he exited the room.
Glass afterward said she believes Perry is afraid of defending his record in office.
"That is not leadership - to run away like a scared little boy from someone who just wants to engage you in debate," Glass said.
Glass said Perry is hoping few Texans pay attention when the other candidates engage in a televised debate on Oct. 19. "He is afraid to debate because he knows he will not show well," she said.
Perry earlier told reporters Democrat Bill White is to blame for there being no debate. Perry said the voting public does not gain much from a televised debate when the candidates are answering reporters' questions across Texas. He suggested voters will learn more from a live interview he is doing Friday with Evan Smith of the online Texas Tribune than they would from him appearing on a debate.
Perry said there would have been a debate if White had met his stipulation that White must first release his income tax returns for the years when he was a deputy secretary of energy under President Clinton. White has refused but admitted he owed no personal income taxes in 1995 because of business investments.
"I wish you all in the media were as interested in what he's hiding with his personal income tax as you are with whether there will be a debate," Perry said.
"Are the people of the state of Texas going to be greatly dis-serviced when for an hour two people sit upon the stage and discuss the issues that two or three moderators come up with?" Perry said.
Perry said voters do not come up to him clamoring for a debate. He said they want to know how the state is going to keep the economy going or have good public schools.
"That's what's on people's minds, not three moderators sitting there with a couple of presidential, excuse me, gubernatorial candidates talking about who was the first governor of Texas or some of the other questions that get asked in the debates that, frankly, are not of great importance to the people of Texas."
Perry said he will not debate Glass or Green Party candidate Deb Shafto. He said the news media should ask them questions and make their positions known to the public.
© 2010 Houston Chronicle: www.chron.com
To search TTC News Archives click
To view the Trans-Texas Corridor Blog click