Saturday, September 03, 2011

Ron Paul: "Rick Perry's poll numbers will fall quickly once voters get to know him better."

Tough talk from Ron Paul on Rick Perry


The Associated Press
Copyright 2011

Republican presidential contender Ron Paul likened Texas Gov. Rick Perry to a "candidate of the week" Friday afternoon and said his Republican opponent's poll numbers would fall quickly once voters get to know him better.

"He was the one saying, `Oh yeah, I'm all for secession,' and that kind of talk," Paul told The Associated Press. "The only thing I would advise is looking into him, looking at his record, and not just taking him at face value. Texas has had a lot of changes in these last eight years, not exactly positive either."

In a 2009 interview, Perry said there was no reason for Texas to secede from the union, but suggested it was a possibility if Washington political leaders continued to "thumb their nose at the American people."

Paul's aggressive criticism — coupled with his rising media profile — threaten to taint Perry's image among some Republican voters. Paul finished second in the Iowa straw poll and enjoys a passionate following in early voting states like New Hampshire as well. And while he espouses libertarian views, Paul dismissed speculation he would abandon his Republican candidacy for another party.

Asked directly whether he had ruled out a third-party bid, Paul said, "Essentially I have."

"The reason I rule it out, the easiest way, and this is disgusting, because we don't have a very good Democratic process here. … The Republicans and Democrats write the laws, so they make it very hard to get on the ballot."

Since joining the Republican presidential contest last month, Perry has leaped ahead of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in two national polls.

But in an interview on a bike trail along Lake Massabesic Friday afternoon, Paul suggested Perry was simply another "candidate of the week."

"There are a lot of candidates who climbed real fast and went down real fast," Paul said.

The Perry campaign had no immediate comment.

© 2011 Associated Press:

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Friday, September 02, 2011

Rick Perry's “Fed Up!” For Dummies

With debates looming, Rick Perry’s ‘Fed Up!’ becomes required reading

Rick Perry Fed Up! for dummies


By Jim Galloway, Political Insider
Atlanta Journal Constitution
Copyright 2011

Labor Day approaches, and if you want to understand Republican dialogue this month – we have three presidential debates in the next 20 days – then your weekend reading assignment is obvious.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s “Fed Up!” has suddenly become a required text.

From the NYT’s The Caucus this morning:

In “Fed Up!” Mr. Perry unleashes a passionate, conservative critique against the size, scope and power of the federal government that leads him to condemn Social Security as “a crumbling monument to the failure of the New Deal” and climate change as “all one contrived phony mess.” He also assails the federal income tax and contends that senators should still be selected by legislators instead of voters.

Since he announced his bid for the Republican nomination, Mr. Perry has defended the ideas in his book while allowing aides to distance his campaign from it. His spokesman has called it a “look back, not a path forward,” but when a reporter in Iowa asked him whether he stands by his statements, Mr. Perry claimed not to have “backed off anything in my book.”

Also this morning, looks at the book as a treasure trove for Perry’s GOP opponents – particularly Mitt Romney:

Though it’s Perry’s name on the cover of “Fed Up!”, it’s actually not clear which sections of the book Perry composed himself. There are five people listed in the acknowledgments section as contributors, including a former U.S. attorney who is said to have “devoted himself full time to the completion of the original manuscript.” Also listed is Dave Carney, Perry’s senior political strategist.

The liberal Texas Tribune this week posted “Fed Up!” For Dummies, a quick review for those to busy or too cheap to send $16 to It notes that, ironically, the forward was penned by Newt Gingrich:

Gingrich really likes Rick Perry, his book and his leadership in Texas. Many Californians, Gingrich says, became fed up with their state’s “socialist policies” and moved to Texas “where on average, they are safer, freer and more prosperous.” (Californians, no emails please. Remember, we did not fact-check the book.)

“His position as governor of Texas gives him a tremendous platform for helping us change course and return to sound conservative fiscal policies,” Gingrich writes, clearly not thinking Perry would become a rival for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination (we’ll be watching the upcoming Sept. 7 GOP debate at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library to see if Gingrich has changed his mind).

© 2011 Atlanta Journal Constitution:

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Sunday, August 28, 2011

"Perry talks about small government, but the HPV episode was big, nanny-state government. So was the Trans-Texas Corridor."

Is the Trans-Texas Corridor the next Perry flip-flop?


Paul Burka
Texas Monthly
Copyright 2011

He had already reversed himself on his statement that it was fine with him if New York chose to allow gay marriage; it was a matter of states’ rights. Now he is reversing himself on his HPV edict of 2007. A couple of things to remember about that episode: One is that Perry issued an executive order to require the injections that would prevent cervical cancer, and he did it while the Legislature was in session. Perry could have asked the Legislature to pass a bill on the subject. His chief of staff’s mother, Dianne Delisi, would have been the ideal author. But he didn’t want a bill. He would have had to share the credit. With an executive order, he could be the hero. The second thing to remember was that the chief beneficiary of the executive order (other than girls whose parents approved of the vaccine) was Mike Toomey, Perry’s former chief of staff, who was the lobbyist for the drug company (Merck) that was peddling the vaccine. Toomey would have greatly benefited if the executive order had gone through.

Perry was quoted in the Texas Tribune today as saying he was “ill-informed” when he issued his executive order. Ill-informed? By whom? Mike Toomey, perhaps? He also said that the order included an opt-out. It did, but not an easy one. The burden was on the parents. They couldn’t just say no. They had to fill out an consciencious-objection affidavit before a notary.

So this is flip-flop number two. That’s why the headline asks if the Corridor will be flip-flop number three. Like gay marriage and parental rights, the taking of private property by government is a huge issue with Republican voters. As originally conceived by Ric Williamson, and enthusiastically supported by Perry, the Corridor was a series of toll roads, each with a footprint a quarter of a mile wide, condemning millions of acres of pristine countryside, that would be built and controlled by Cintra, a foreign corporation. The right-of-way would include power lines, pipelines, and high-speed rail lines.

* * * *

Politicians are entitled to change their minds. Perry goofed when he said states rights was more important to him than gay marriage; he goofed when he issued an intrusive executive order while the Legislature was in session, and he goofed when he bought into Williamson’s vision of a giant network of toll roads (many of which are being built as I write.)

But the question that arises out of Perry’s flip-flops is not whether his recantations are sincere, but whether critism of the flip-flops are going to stick. As I have written many times, Perry is Teflon when it comes to his mistakes. I don’t get it, but it’s demonstrably true. Could any other politician in America talk about a state’s right to secede and get away with it?

So here’s what I want to know: Will his Republican rivals let him get away with his flip-flops? Will the voters? Will he pay any price for them? Will Romney be allowed to flip-flop on his Massachusetts health care plan and his pro-choice positions, and just say, as Perry does, oh, I’ve changed my mind, kings-X? Perry and Romney both have taken unpopular positions in the past. Either both of them should be allowed to seek forgiveness, or neither should be allowed to do so. Perry talks about small government, but the HPV episode was big, nanny-state government. So was the Trans-Texas Corridor. Look at how Perry has used state agencies to expand his power. He did what Bob Bullock did, which was send his allies into state agencies so that they could tell the nominal heads of the agencies what to do. Perry is really a split-personality politician. In philosophy, he is a small-government conservative. But in his governing style, he is still the conservative Democrat he originally was, adroit in using the bureaucracy to exercise power and control in big-government ways.

© 2011 Texas Monthly:

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