Campaign Recap August 22, 2011: Mitt Romney & Rick Perry Emerge as Top Candidates to Beat for Republican Presidential Nomination


By Bonnie K. Goodman

Ms. Goodman is the Editor of History Musings. She has a BA in History & Art History & a Masters in Library and Information Studies from McGill University, and has done graduate work in history at Concordia University. Ms. Goodman has also contributed the overviews, and chronologies in History of American Presidential Elections, 1789-2008, 4th edition, edited by Gil Troy, Fred L. Israel, and Arthur Meier Schlesinger to be published by Facts on File, Inc. in late 2011.



Republican Presidential Candidates: Primaries 2012 — NYT

Democratic Nominee 2012: President Barack Obama’s Official Reelection Campaign Website —

Republican National Committee

Democratic National Committee

  • Gallup Poll: Election 2012 — Track GOP Contender’s Images Week by Week — Generic Ballot Gallup
  • Gallup: Presidential Job Approval Gallup
  • Gallup Daily: Obama Job Approval: Each result is based on a three-day rolling average Gallup
  • Poll Watch: Polls and Related Articles From The New York Times NYT
  • Obama in Dead Heat with Romney, Perry, Paul, Bachmann in Gallup Poll: President Obama is in a statistical dead heat when matched with each of four GOP presidential contenders in a hypothetical 2012 election match-up, according to a new Gallup survey of registered voters.
    Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney leads Obama by a 48 percent to 46 percent margin, while Texas Gov. Rick Perry ties the president at 47 percent. Obama bests Ron Paul by a 47-45 divide and Michele Bachmann by 48-44 split. All results are within a 4-point margin of error…. – ABC News, 8-22-11


Mitt Romney: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Rick Perry: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Ron Paul: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Herman Cain: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Michele Bachmann: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Newt Gingrich: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Jon Huntsman: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

Rick Santorum: Speeches & News — Full Text & Transcripts

“I sincerely appreciate the support from those eager to chart a brighter future for the next generation. While humbled by the encouragement, I have not changed my mind, and therefore I am not seeking our party’s nomination for president.” — Rep. Paul D. Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee

News From Libya Pushes G.O.P. Candidates to Respond NYT, 8-22-11

“The lasting impact of events in Libya will depend on ensuring rebel factions form a unified, civil government that guarantees personal freedoms, and builds a new relationship with the West where we are allies instead of adversaries.” — Gov. Rick Perry

“Governor Huntsman’s view remains that intervention in Libya was a mistake and not core to our national security interest.” — Tim Miller, Jon Huntsman’s Spokesman

“The impending fall of Colonel Qaddafi is one chapter in the developing story of a nation in turmoil. Qaddafi has been a longtime opponent of freedom, and I am hopeful — as the whole world should be — that his defeat is a step toward openness, democracy and human rights for a people who greatly deserve it.” — Jon M. Huntsman Jr. Official Statement

“I opposed U.S. military involvement in Libya and I am hopeful that our intervention there is about to end.” — Representative Michele Bachmann

“The Obama Administration’s call for Syrian President Assad to step down is long overdue. President Assad threatens the safety and security not only of the Syrian people, but the entire Middle East. He also supports terrorist organizations Hezbollah and Hamas. Every diplomatic option should be brought to bear to prevent President Assad from wreaking further violence on his people and the region.” — Statement by Gov. Rick Perry on Syria

“America must show leadership on the world stage and work to move these developing nations toward modernity. This means using the bullhorn of the presidency and not remaining silent for too long while voices of freedom and dissent are under attack.” — Mitt Romney’s Statement on Syria

“The Republican nominee and the next president of the United States is going to be Rick Perry or Mitt Romney. Michele Bachmann has struck a real chord on the issues important to conservatives, but what we need is a governor with proven record of job creation, deficit reduction, and other accomplishments.” — Fred Malek, a top Republican money man who ran George H.W. Bush’s 1992 campaign


  • Despite Bachmann’s success, the real GOP race is now Perry vs. Romney: Until now, the biggest question looming over the 2012 Republican primary was who would emerge as the leading alternative to the nominal front-runner, Mitt Romney. We now know the answer to that question: Rick Perry.
    Sure, Perry jumped into the race only one day ago and needs to prove he’s worthy of the national stage. Yes, Michele Bachmann is the one who boxed Tim Pawlenty out of the race with her triumph in the Iowa Straw Poll on Saturday.
    But it is the governor of the great big state of Texas, not the Minnesota congresswoman, who poses the biggest threat to Romney from here on out. That’s because Perry boasts that killer combination of assets: the power to grab hold of voters — which Bachmann shares — plus a concrete record of creating jobs. It’s the rhetoric plus the results, the inspiration layered on top of the perspiration…. – National Journal, 8-15-11
  • Top tier emerges as GOP nomination race enters a defining phase: With Rick Perry declaring his candidacy and Michele Bachmann winning the Iowa straw poll, the two go head-to-head for the GOP’s social and religious conservatives and against establishment front-runner Mitt Romney…. – LAT, 8-15-11


    • Ryan Says No to 2012 — Again: Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin never said he was running for president. In fact, he said again and again that he had no plans to seek the Republican nomination. Yet even with his repeated denials, several conservative leaders had stepped up their efforts in the last week and urged him to reconsider…. – NYT, 8-22-11
    • Romney’s Home Rebuilding Plan Draws Attention NYT, 8-22-11
    • Daniels ‘at peace’ with decision to skip 2012 run: Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels says he’s “at peace” with his decision not to seek the Republican nomination for president.
      Daniels says he sees good people with a lot of character in the field and that he believes many of them have the right skills to be president…. – AP, 8-21-11
    • Jon Huntsman vs. Rick Perry: Shoot-out at the GOP corral: Jon Huntsman and Rick Perry represent very different views of how a Republican can beat Barack Obama in 2012. To jazz up his campaign, Huntsman laid into tea party favorite Perry Sunday…. – AP, 8-21-11
    • As Governor, Perry Backed Wind, Gas and Coal: A look back at Gov. Rick Perry’s energy policies during his tenure shows his strong support for natural gas drilling and “clean coal,” as well as wind power…. – NYT, 8-21-11
    • Perry and the Tea Party: Depends on Whom You Ask: Gov. Rick Perry is strongly associated with the Tea Party, but party supporters at a recent gathering in Waco expressed varying opinions about the governor’s record and credentials…. – NYT, 8-21-11
    • Despite Outward Similarities, Perry and Bush Keep Their Distance: The Bush inner circle’s dislike for Gov. Rick Perry, who has worked to differentiate himself from the former president, runs deep…. – NYT, 8-20-11
    • Is Sarah Palin going to announce she’s running for president on September 3?: It’s relatively late in the game, but GOP strategist Karl Rove predicts that Palin will jump into the 2012 presidential race. She could do it when she headlines a tea party gathering next month…. – CS Monitor, 8-20-11
    • Huntsman: 2012 rivals politically on the ‘fringes’: The former Utah governor says his Republican rivals as well as President Barack Obama are on the political “fringes.” Huntsman says Obama is too liberal and there are Republican candidates who are too far to the right and have “zero substance.”… – AP, 8-21-11
    • Huntsman pounds Perry on climate change and Fed: Presidential candidate Jon Huntsman is pounding away at rival Rick Perry’s skepticism of manmade global warming and criticism of the nation’s central banker, saying those stands hurt the GOP and make the Texas governor come off as a not-so-serious national figure…. – AP, 8-20-11

“We need to be thoughtful before we ever go into an area that America’s interests are truly being impacted, and then we need to start having a thoughtful conversation with those commanders in the field about how to be bringing our young men and women back. Look, I think the president made a huge mistake by signaling the enemy that we’re going to leave at a particular time. That’s bad public policy, but more importantly it put our kids in harm’s way.” — Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX)

“The answer is we’re going to cut the taxes, we’re going lower the regulations, we’re going to get the lawyers out of our business and we’re going to get America back working again.” — Rick Perry

    • Perry: Troop withdrawals need careful discussion: Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Saturday that thoughtful discussion is needed to bring U.S. troops home from Afghanistan and Iraq as he wrapped up his first week of campaigning for the GOP’s presidential nomination…. – AP, 8-20-11

“Because we’re all about smaller government; we’re all about making government work. We’re all about cutting taxes, cutting regulations and cutting litigation. If you want to live in a state and in a country that doesn’t allow for over-suing, then I’m your guy.” — Gov. Rick Perry

    • Perry brings job message to high-unemployment SC: Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s delivered a timely jobs message to South Carolina’s Republican primary voters Friday.
      On this trip, he’s also picking up an endorsement from one of the state’s top fundraisers. A campaign representative for Perry said prominent GOP fundraiser David Wilkins will endorse the governor’s bid for the presidential nomination…. – AP, 8-19-11
    • Off the Cuff, Into the Headlines: Gov. Rick Perry has been tripped up by off-the-cuff remarks before, and it’s clear from his “treason” comment about Ben Bernanke that he still has not learned to watch his words…. – NYT, 8-19-11
    • Palin Keeps an Eye on Iowa: Sarah Palin has not forgotten about Iowa. One week after barnstorming the Iowa State Fair, Ms. Palin released a new video on Friday that chronicled her visit to the state that will kick off the Republican nominating contest early next year. The campaign-style video, which features a montage of photographs of people lining up to see her, is the latest piece of evidence that Ms. Palin wishes to remain a factor in the 2012 presidential campaign…. – AP, 8-19-11
    • Obama Moves to Regain Mantle of Campaigner: In the first indication of how he will confront his Republican opponent, the president cast himself as a rational, yet partisan fighter…. – NYT, 8-19-11
    • Just an Ordinary Overachiever in Paint Creek: Growing up in Paint Creek, Rick Perry was just like everybody else, his hometown friends say, except that he did everything better…. – NYT, 8-19-11
    • E.P.A Draws Harsh Words From Most G.O.P. Candidates: Republican presidential hopefuls are portraying the Environmental Protection Agency as a symbol of a heavy-handed regulatory agenda that they say is strangling the economy…. – NYT, 8-18-11
    • Jon Huntsman turns to Twitter to criticize Perry: Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman on Thursday turned to Twitter to attack a rival, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, for his positions on evolution and climate change.
      “To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy,” Huntsman tweeted…. – APP, 8-18-11
    • Huntsman on Evolution? ‘Call Me Crazy’: Jon M. Huntsman Jr. is eager to stand out. Just not too much. In a Twitter message sent Thursday afternoon, Mr. Huntsman wrote: To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy.Thu Aug 18 17:57:52 via Twitter for iPhoneJon Huntsman JonHuntsman
      The message was a direct shot at his newest rival, Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, who said this week that climate change was “a scientific theory that has not been proved” and called evolution “just a theory.”… – NYT, 8-18-11
    • Minnesota: Pawlenty Says He Won’t Run for Senate: Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty definitively ruled out a 2012 campaign for the Senate on Wednesday after ending his bid for the White House a few days ago…. – NYT, 8-18-11
    • Perry and Romney Assail Obama on Syria: Two Republican presidential candidates assail the president’s handling of the situation in Syria…. – NYT, 8-18-11
    • Warren Files to Test the Senate Waters: Elizabeth Warren formed an exploratory committee on Thursday morning as she continues to consider a run for the Senate in Massachusetts, and her camp maintains that she is still doing just that: exploring. But given their gleeful reaction to this news, Bay State and some national Democrats seem primed for a painful letdown if Ms. Warren, a Harvard Law professor, ultimately decides against challenging Senator Scott Brown…. – NYT, 8-18-11
    • With Ames Over, Candidates Are Free to Move About the Country: The candidates for president have 136 days until the start of 2012, when the real voting will begin, first in Iowa but then very quickly in New Hampshire, South Carolina, Michigan, Nevada and the rest. For their campaigns, the trick is how best to schedule that time. And the answer will help reveal the very different strategies that each campaign has mapped out to win the nomination…. – AP, 8-18-11

“Friday, Iowa’s going to bury one of your own, one of those young Navy SEALs who was killed in Afghanistan,” he said, pausing as his voice cracked.
“I want you to think about T.J. Tumilson and the sacrifices that are still being made today so a guy like me can stand up on a soapbox at the Iowa State Fair and talk freely about freedom and liberty and America and that we are an exceptional country and we’re going to stay an exceptional country.”
Then, Perry pointed his left index finger skyward, raised his voice and declared: “We don’t need anybody apologizing anywhere in this world about America!” — Gov. Rick Perry

    • Perry exudes confidence, swagger on campaign trail: Welcome to the Rick Perry roadshow. The newest entrant into the Republican presidential race has added a Texas-size dose of spark to a crop of candidates who haven’t seemed to stoke the passions of the tea party or the broader GOP. No matter where he goes, the Lone Star governor seems to own his crowds within minutes of taking the stage. He moves but doesn’t pace. He gestures but not wildly. He sheds his sport coat — and he turns heads…. – AP, 8-18-11
    • Perry Parries Hecklers in Portsmouth: Gov. Rick Perry of Texas took his popovers with a side of hecklers Thursday morning, when he stopped into Popovers on the Square in downtown Portsmouth to greet voters. More than a dozen protesters, many of them mobilized by the New Hampshire Alliance for Retired Americans, welcomed Mr. Perry with signs…. – NYT, 8-18-11
    • E.P.A Draws Harsh Words From Most G.O.P. Candidates: Republican presidential hopefuls are portraying the Environmental Protection Agency as a symbol of a heavy-handed regulatory agenda that they say is strangling the economy…. – NYT, 8-18-11
    • Day After Fed Uproar, Perry Tones It Down: Gov. Rick Perry of Texas shied away from criticizing the Federal Reserve, and other potentially controversial subjects, at two carefully controlled campaign stops in New Hampshire…. – NYT, 8-18-11

“I think that everybody who runs for president, it probably takes them a little bit of time before they start realizing that this isn’t like running for governor or running for Senate or running for Congress. You’ve got to be a little more careful about what you say.” — President Barack Obama on CNN

    • Perry’s colorful tongue takes the national stage: In the words of Gov. Rick Perry, secession was one scenario on the table for frustrated Texans. The BP oil spill? Might have been an act of God instead of corporate errors. And if the Federal Reserve puts more money in the U.S. system, as Perry told voters in Iowa this week, you could chalk it up as a treasonous act that would be treated “pretty ugly” back home…. – AP, 8-17-11
    • Perry Links Federal Reserve Policies and Treason: Gov. Rick Perry did not retract his remarks that the Federal Reserve’s monetary policies were “treasonous.” Critics from the right say this is what they expect of the Texas governor…. – NYT, 8-17-11
    • Romney View of Perry: Just Another Opponent: Despite the entry of Gov. Rick Perry into the Republican presidential race, Mitt Romney is trying to keep his focus on President Obama…. – AP, 8-17-11
    • Romney View of Perry: Just Another Opponent: Despite the entry of Gov. Rick Perry into the Republican presidential race, Mitt Romney is trying to keep his focus on President Obama…. – NYT, 8-17-11
    • Gingrich Turns Focus to Hawaii: It may not make for the best political strategy, but Newt Gingrich is laughing all the way to the beach. Mr. Gingrich’s presidential schedule shows him campaigning in Hawaii on Saturday and Monday, thousands of miles — and a big ocean — away from Iowa and New Hampshire…. – NYT, 8-17-11
    • White House paints GOP field with tea party brush: The rising profiles of Republican presidential candidates Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann are giving the White House a new opening: linking the entire GOP field to the tea party, whose popularity has recently sagged….
      Republican candidates must decide whether to “swear allegiance to the tea party” or work with Democrats to create jobs, Obama campaign adviser Robert Gibbs said Tuesday. After last week’s GOP debate in Iowa, Obama campaign guru David Axelrod claimed the presidential contenders were “pledging allegiance to the tea party.” And a new video by the Democratic National Committee says Republican lawmakers and presidential candidates are “embracing extreme tea party policies.”… – AP, 8-17-11
    • Obama Presses His Case in Crucial Iowa, but Perry Is Close on His Heels: While President Obama sought to regain support in the Midwestern states that once favored his candidacy, Gov. Rick Perry staged a rally just 11 miles away…. – NYT, 8-17-11
    • After a Strong Start, Can Bachmann Follow Through?: Michele Bachmann has made history as the Republican Party’s first genuine female presidential candidate. But the question of whether she is electable remains unanswered…. – NYT, 8-17-11

“I think Rick Perry is a real positive. Nobody can predict outcomes, but I think he will do very nicely. We need someone in this country who is willing to shake things up.” — Donald Trump

    • Trump praises Perry, keeps open a possible run: Real estate mogul Donald Trump said Tuesday he expects Texas Gov. Rick Perry to do “very nicely” as a presidential candidate. But Trump stopped short of endorsing Perry and said he hasn’t ruled out running for president himself as an independent…. – AP, 8-16-11
    • In Open Primary Plan for Arizona, a Call for Moderation: A bipartisan group has stepped forward with a remedy for what members describe as the lack of moderation in Arizona politics…. – NYT, 8-16-11
    • Caucus Video: Three-Way Republican Race Emerges; Obama’s Bus Tour: Michael D. Shear on Rick Perry and the new dimensions of the Republican presidential race. John Harwood on President Obama’s bus tour through the Midwest…. – NYT, 8-16-11

“If this guy prints more money between now and the election, I don’t know what y’all would do to him in Iowa, but we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas.” Gov. Rick Perry said, responding to a question from the audience.

    • White House fires back at Perry comments: Perry said if Bernanke did that, “we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas.” Carney says people running for president have to think about what they say. He spoke to reporters traveling with Obama on his three-state Midwest bus tour. … – AP, 8-16-11
    • A Confident Perry Lingers to Make Friends at the Fair: The addition of Gov. Rick Perry of Texas to the presidential campaign has changed the landscape of the Republican field and injected a shot of vigor into the contest…. – NYT, 8-16-11
    • New pecking order in GOP field shifts race for WH: In less than a week, the slow-to-begin race for the Republican nomination has accelerated and undergone a dramatic shift, essentially becoming a three-way contest for the chance to challenge President Barack Obama next year…. – AP, 8-15-11

“Understanding how the economy works by having worked in the real economy is finally essential in the White House. And I hope people recognize that. I respect the other people in this race, but I think the only other person who has that kind of extensive private sector experience besides me in the Republican race is Herman Cain….
I’m not going to vary my speech and my vision for the American people based upon the political winds of the day. I wish Rick the very best. As the process goes on, we’ll see whose background and skill most fits the needs of the country at a critical time like this.” — Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, told reporters during a campaign appearance at Litchfield Technology

    • Romney contrasts business experience with Perry: Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney suggested Monday that his new GOP rival, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, doesn’t have the business experience needed to be president…. – AP, 8-15-11

“I happen to think the biggest issue facing this country is that we are facing economic turmoil, and if we don’t have a president that doesn’t get this country working, we’re in trouble. And I’ve got a track record.” — Gov. Rick Perry told about 300 Republican activists in Waterloo’s Electric Park Ballroom

“We started our own successful small company. We know how to build from scratch, putting capital together and starting a business from scratch and building it up so that we can actually offer jobs to people.” — Rep. Michele Bachmann

  • Bachmann, Perry compete on the same issue: jobs: They’re competing with each other and currently leading the pack of Republican presidential hopefuls, but Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann are riding the same issue out of Iowa: jobs…. – AP, 8-15-11
  • After Iowa, Republicans Face a New Landscape: With Tim Pawlenty out of the fight, a three-way race began taking shape to find a nominee who can emerge as the strongest challenger to President Obama…. – NYT, 8-15-11
  • Is Iowa Irrelevant?: A narrow reading of evidence suggests that Iowa does not matter at all for Republicans, but there are other factors to consider…. – NYT, 8-15-11


  • Chaffetz Won’t Seek Senate Seat in Utah: After appearing to spoil for a fight, Representative Jason Chaffetz, Republican of Utah, announced Monday that he would not run for his state’s Senate seat, removing a potentially formidable rival to Senator Orrin Hatch as Mr. Hatch seeks a seventh term in the Senate…. – NYT, 8-22-11


2 Wis. Democrats keep their Senate seats: Two Democratic Wisconsin state senators targeted by Republicans survived their elections Tuesday, ending a tumultuous summer of recalls spurred by anger over how lawmakers reacted to Gov. Scott Walker’s proposal curbing collective bargaining rights of public workers.
State Sen. Bob Wirch of Pleasant Prairie was one of two Democratic state senators who survived Tuesday’s recall elections.
The recall elections in Wisconsin drew national attention with money pouring in from outside groups on both sides to influence the outcome. It’s estimated that total spending may break $40 million on the nine recall races combined.
Democrats saw the recalls as a first step in an effort to roll back the sweeping gains made by Republicans in the 2010 elections in Wisconsin and other states. In the Midwestern state last November, Republicans won a U.S. Senate seat, the governorship and majorities in both chambers of the Wisconsin state legislature…. – USA Today, 8-16-11

  • 2 Wisconsin Democrats Re-elected: Two Democrats Jim Holperin and Bob Wirch, kept their seats in the Wisconsin State Senate on Tuesday, drawing an end to an unprecedented series of recall elections that had distracted the state all summer…. – NYT, 8-17-11
  • Dems hold on in Wisconsin: Recall elections in Wisconsin are over – for now – as two Democratic state senators easily beat back bids to remove them from power in special elections held on Tuesday. But controversial conservative Republican Gov. Scott Walker may face a recall next…. – Seattle Post Intelligencer, 8-17-11
  • Dems survive in final Wis. recall races: Two Democratic state senators in Wisconsin withstood recall elections Tuesday night, the last in a series of recalls that Democrats launched as political retribution for a Republican-backed effort to scale back labor rights…. – Politico, 8-17-11
  • 2 Democrats keep their seats in Wisconsin recall election: Two Democratic state senators in Wisconsin defeated Republican challengers to hold on to their seats in a recall election Tuesday, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. It was the last round in a series of recall elections…. – CNN, 8-17-11
  • Two Democrats Survive Recall in Wisconsin: Two Wisconsin Democratic state senators held onto their seats Tuesday in the state’s final recall elections of the year, leaving Republicans with a one-seat majority in the Senate…. – WSJ, 8-17-11
  • Democratic incumbents win Wisconsin recalls: Two Wisconsin Democratic state senators survived recall elections Tuesday night, leaving Republicans with a narrow 17 to 16 majority in the upper chamber. … – WaPo, 8-17-11
  • In brief: Two Democratic Wisconsin state senators targeted by Republicans survived their elections Tuesday, ending a tumultuous summer of recalls spurred by anger over how lawmakers reacted to Gov. Scott Walker’s proposal curbing collective bargaining rights of union leaders…. – San Jose Mercury News, 8-17-11
  • 2011 Wisconsin recall elections come to a close with two incumbent Democrats: Two Democratic incumbent senators in Wisconsin both held their ground tonight, defeating Republican challengers in recall elections. The results mark the end of the dramatic summer recalls…. – Ballot News, 8-17-11
  • Holperin and Wirch keep their jobs: Democrats are claiming victory after retaining both seats in final two recalls. Tuesday’s recall elections weren’t about deciding which party would control the Senate, but by how much…. – Wisconsin Radio Network, 8-17-11


  • Politico Arena: Daily Debate with Policymakers, Opinionshapers & Academics Politico
  • Julian Zelizer: It’s too early to name Bachmann, Perry front-runners: The meteoric rise of Rep. Michele Bachman and Texas Gov. Rick Perry in the competition for the GOP presidential nomination — combined with the rapid demise of Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s presidential bid — all before any caucus or primary has taken place, reveals how the presidential selection process is broken…. – CNN, 8-22-11
  • Evan Smith: 5 myths about Rick Perry: You’re probably thinking, “I’ve seen this movie before: West Texas boy makes middling grades in college, gets elected governor and — to the consternation of gobsmacked Democrats, who misunderestimate his folksy appeal — runs for the Republican nomination for president.” But if that’s all you know about Rick Perry, you should be asking whether the country is ready for another White House occupant from the Lone Star State. The fact is, the most recent entrant into the GOP race is nothing like the caricatures being promoted on the left and the right. Here are some myths that need debunking, and quick….

    He’s a Bush clone:

        Biographical similarities aside, Perry is not the second coming of George W. Bush, either stylistically or substantively.

    He’s a hillbilly dimwit:

        That’s bias against Texas, pure and simple. Just because he wears cowboy boots and drops his G’s doesn’t mean he’s a dummy.

    He’s an ideological purist:

        It’s true that Perry was 10th Amendment before 10th Amendment was cool, a believer in the notion that states are the laboratories of democracy — and that nothing good comes top-down from government.

    He opposes federal stimulus money:

        Perry made headlines during the 2009 legislative session when he turned down $555 million in federal stimulus funding to extend unemployment insurance , citing the strings attached, and he has made a talking point out of the “failed stimulus.”
        He has presided over an unqualified economic miracle: When Perry says Texas has less than 10 percent of the nation’s population but has created more than 40 percent of its jobs in the past two years, or that more jobs have been created in Texas in the past decade — that is, on his watch — than in all 49 other states combined, he’s not exaggerating….

    WaPo, 8-18-11

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