Here are the issues that could beat Texas' Rick Perry

Reply Thu 25 Aug, 2011 02:46 pm
I agree, the last thing anyone opposing the other guy is to get complacent especially when the consequences could be a nut like Perry. He actually has a shot at winning because he appeals to the 'Cheney' like supporters so to speak. They think he is the "Texan George Bush pretended to be."
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Reply Thu 25 Aug, 2011 05:48 pm
Someday a white man's gonna to be elected President again.

That’s a very racist statement, not surprised it came from you.
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Reply Thu 25 Aug, 2011 07:40 pm
Edgar- I am totally conflicted about this entire issue. It would be very helpful if you could write about the things that you have seen in Perry's governorship that would indicate that he is part and parcel of the wing nut group.
Reply Thu 25 Aug, 2011 07:47 pm
Phoenix32890 wrote:

Edgar- I am totally conflicted about this entire issue. It would be very helpful if you could write about the things that you have seen in Perry's governorship that would indicate that he is part and parcel of the wing nut group.

I can't speak for Edgar, but my parents are Republicans in TX, and they can't stand Perry either. My pop says he's not very consistent.

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Reply Fri 26 Aug, 2011 09:26 am
Edgar- I am totally conflicted about this entire issue. It would be very helpful if you could write about the things that you have seen in Perry's governorship that would indicate that he is part and parcel of the wing nut group.

I don't quite understand your conflict, in this post you said,

I have to agree with you on that one. If Perry runs, I would vote for Obama, and for me, that is saying a lot.
Reply Fri 26 Aug, 2011 09:38 am
I think what she's conflicted about is the idea that there's a sub-culture of Christians in this country who are striving to bring their own version of Sharia-like government into power. I understand her conflict. Mainstream-seeming Republicans with moral/conservative outlooks that seem reasonable enough, unless you see a hidden agenda. Hidden agendas are what send folks looking for tin hats.

I had a abrupt wake up call to the Christian right's hidden agenda about five years ago when our local mayoral elections became a contested race. We live in a small community and our elections are seldom anything but boring. That year, however, we had an independent candidate run against our sitting mayor. That wasn't a bad thing and many of us, myself included, said we needed a change at Village Hall. We quickly came to be cautious of getting what we asked for. Rather than being an MD, as we thought "Dr H......" must be when he first arrived on the scene, this new candidate turned out to be a far-right fundamentalist pastor with a dr of theology from some mail in program. He had a Saturday morning radio show on a small signal radio station that no one had ever heard of until he decided to run for mayor. One Saturday, he was going on about how the "movement" was making inroads into local governments and how the master plan of starting small and moving up was coming to fruition. It was something like, "Throughout the land we are gaining control of local and regional seats of power on our way to bringing the Glory of God to the Nation!"

I was one of the many folks who had hoped that we'd get someone to run against the sitting mayor. I ended up stuffing mailboxes and ringing doorbells in the effort to get him reelected.
Reply Fri 26 Aug, 2011 10:35 am
oh as to that, i dont really know. some poticians on the right seem to espouse extreme religious views because it has been an "in thing" among todays republicans and some like Bachmann are obviously the real deal.

Perry's might be more political convenient--or not.

I also have issues with his extreme views on SS, public education, thinking we need to do away with 16 amendment...a host of radical views.

One of the more trivial issue I guess, is his claim that he balanced his state budget, he did, but it was with the money from the stimulus he claimed to have declined. He did decline the unemployment part because he didn't like the string attached, but he took the rest and put it towards balancing the budget because I think Texas has a state law where they have to keep the budget balance and he didn't want to use the "rainy day fund."

Texas's love/hate relationship with Washington's money

More on Perry and the dirty government here

On the religious factor: found this interesting article. He might really a real deal on his religious views.


Articles of Faith: Can Rick Perry’s Evangelical Appeal Reach Beyond Texas?

Since his entry into the GOP presidential race earlier this month, Rick Perry has rocketed to the top of national polls and attained frontrunner status. The position of the Anybody But Mitt candidate, briefly occupied by Michele Bachmann from June to early August, is now Perry’s. The man who hosted an evangelical Christian prayer-rally-slash-revival would seem to be a strong favorite with the religious conservatives who hold significant power in several early primary states. And so far, Perry is polling well among churchgoing Republicans.

For all his appeal, however, Perry has already stumbled in his handling of some social issues and in doing so, raised questions about whether the governor is in tune with the priorities of social conservatives outside Texas.

Not surprisingly, Perry’s biggest supporters among religious conservatives are in his home state. In July, Perry met with a group of evangelical leaders at the Fort Worth headquarters of televangelist James Robison. A number of his evangelical supporters, including African-American and Hispanic pastors, took part in The Response in early August. And this weekend, Perry will take a break from the campaign trail to visit with a group of evangelical heavyweights that includes Christian historian David Barton and evangelist Rick Scarborough. The meeting will take place in Fredericksburg, Texas, at the ranch of Jim Leininger, a longtime Perry donor and financial backer of efforts to ban gay marriage.

Perry would do well, however, to bring in some religious leaders from outside Texas. While the state is steeped in evangelical religion, it is also an insular political and cultural environment. As Gabriel Debenedetti pointed out pointed out in the New Republic last week, the religious conservatives who have powered Perry’s political success are a relatively small, extreme bunch. Perry has won his three elections as governor largely by capturing the nomination in the state’s GOP primary, a contest that draws roughly 4% of the state’s voting-age population. That small group of Republican voters has somewhat unusual priorities.

Take Perry’s zealous support of the 10th Amendment and state rights. Liberal critics like to mock Perry’s musings about Texas secession. But to national social conservatives, it’s not a laughing matter. Their agenda is topped by the twin goals of banning abortion and gay marriage nationally. Until Perry signed an anti-abortion pledge earlier this week, anti-abortion activists questioned whether the Texan would be willing to use federal power to restrict abortion.

Social conservative had reason to question Perry’s commitment to their agenda after New York passed legislation to allow gay marriage in that state. Perry’s initial response was fully in line with his anti-federalist orientation. “That’s New York, and that’s their business, and that’s fine with me,” he told an audience in Aspen.

Almost immediately, Perry was called on the carpet by the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins, who summoned the governor to his radio program to explain his remarks. Perry clarified that “it’s fine with me that a state is using their sovereign rights to decide an issue” but “obviously gay marriage is not fine with me.” The explanation fell short of putting religious conservatives’ minds at ease.

They were also outraged in 2007 when Perry issued an executive order mandating a vaccine for HPV–which can cause cervical cancer–for girls entering sixth grade in Texas. Even though parents had the option to have their daughters opt out and refuse the vaccine, social conservatives argued that the policy would encourage sexual promiscuity. The Texas legislature agreed with them and overturned Perry’s order, but he continued to defend the policy.

As recently as this July, leading social conservatives were still concerned about the decision, with one leader telling the Christian Broadcasting Network: “The vaccine issue is not helpful, and Perry will have to address it.” The governor did, using a Romney-esque maneuver, telling a New Hampshire audience this month that he now considers the policy a “mistake.”

Finally, while many of Perry’s fellow presidential contenders have competed for the title of Most Islamophobic, Perry may face questions about his close ties to Muslim communities in Texas. In particular, Perry has forged a friendship with Aga Khan, leader of the Ismaili sect in Texas, and has attended a number of Ismaili events, even laying the first brick at the groundbreaking ceremony for an Ismaili worship center in Plano in 2005. Perry has also signed off on Muslim-friendly legislation and played a role in expanding the Muslim Histories and Culture Project, which introduces Islamic history and culture curricula into public schools.

A background of cultivating Muslim support hasn’t stopped politicians like Newt Gingrich from engaging in Muslim fear-mongering. But to Perry’s credit, he has so far declined to join in that particularly unsavory GOP trend. That could serve him well if he finds himself in the position of appealing to independent voters next fall. To get to that point, however, he’ll need to convince religious conservatives that he sings from their hymnbook.


I know he is confused on whether his state actually has a creationist class. And seems to be a bit of a homophobic.

Going by past elections, while some like you and other social liberals but fiscal conservatives (think that is an accurate way to describe it?) would find all that objectionable, on the whole, a lot of religious conservatives agree with those views and more. So he could very well be elected for in the republican primary.
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Reply Sun 28 Aug, 2011 07:22 am

I have mostly abandoned this forum as I am busy with other things, but will provide you this link -- which contains many others -- that may help you in your evaluation of the governor of Texas we know so well here.

Reply Sun 28 Aug, 2011 08:47 am
From the Blog
Think Progress

(1) PERRY ALLOWED THE EXECUTION OF A LIKELY INNOCENT MAN, THEN IMPEDED AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE MATTER: In 2004, Cameron Todd Willingham was executed in Huntsville, Texas after being convicted of arson and the murder of his three children. Even after significant evidence emerged showing that arson had not caused the fire (thus exonerating Willingham), Perry refused to grant a stay of execution. Five years after Willingham was executed, a report from a Texas Forensic Science Commission investigator found that the fire could not have been arson. As the commission prepared to hear testimony from the investigator in October 2009, Perry quickly fired and replaced three of its members, forcing an indefinite delay in the hearing.

(2) PERRY WANTS TO REPEAL THE 16th AND 17th AMENDMENTS, ENDING DIRECT ELECTION OF U.S. SENATORS AND THE FEDERAL INCOME TAX: In his 2010 book Fed Up!, Perry called the 16th and 17th Amendments “mistaken” and said they resulted from “a fit of populist rage.” The 16th Amendment allows the federal government to collect income taxes, which is the single biggest source of revenue, accounting for 45 percent of all receipts. The 17th Amendment took electing U.S. senators out of the hands of political insiders and allowed the American public to decide their representation instead. If Perry had his way, the federal government would be stripped of its current ability to fund highway construction projects, food inspectors, and the military, and the American public would not even be permitted to elect their own senators.

(3) PERRY PROPOSED LETTING STATES DROP OUT OF SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICAID: Despite the programs’ importance and popularity, Perry has argued that states like Texas should be allowed to opt out of Social Security and Medicaid. Were Perry to have his way on Social Security, “the entire system would collapse under the weight of too many Social Security beneficiaries who had not paid into the system,” notes Ian Millhiser. On Medicaid, in addition to stripping 3.6 million low-income Texans of their health care, Perry’s proposal would actually hurt, not help, the state’s budget deficit. This is because, as Igor Volsky writes, opting out of Medicaid would take “billions out of the state economy that goes on to support hospitals and other providers,” while forcing hospitals “to swallow the costs of caring for uninsured individuals who will continue to use the emergency room as their primary source of care.”

(4) TEXAS IS THE COUNTRY’S BIGGEST POLLUTER, BUT PERRY SUED THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FOR DISAPPROVING OF THE STATE’S AIR QUALITY STANDARDS: Texas is the biggest polluter in the country, leading the nation in carbon dioxide emissions. However, when the EPA published its “disapproval” of the state’s air quality standards for falling short of the Clean Air Act’s requirements, Perry sued the federal government to challenge the ruling. Perry’s environmental record doesn’t end there. He is a global warming denier who called the 2010 BP oil spill an “act of God” while speaking at a trade association funded by BP.

(5) PERRY DESIGNATED AS “EMERGENCY LEGISLATION” A BILL REQUIRING ALL WOMEN SEEKING ABORTIONS TO HAVE SONOGRAMS FIRST: In January, Perry proposed requiring all women seeking abortions to have a sonogram at least 24 hours before the procedure. Under the bill, doctors would be required to “tell a woman the size of her fetus’ limbs and organs, even if she does not want to know.” Before a woman is permitted to have an abortion, physicians are also forced to provide an image of the fetus and make the woman listen to the sound of its heartbeat. Perry designated his proposal as “emergency legislation,” allowing the bill to be rushed through the legislature. He signed it into law last month.

(6) PERRY GUTTED CHILDCARE SERVICES EVEN AS TEXAS CHILDHOOD POVERTY HIT 25 PERCENT: Facing a $27 billion budget deficit this year, Perry decided to gut child support services, despite a report from the Center for Public Policy Priorities that found nearly one in four Texas children lived beneath the poverty line. Instead of raising revenue like California, a state facing a similarly sized deficit, Perry scaled back more than $10 billion of child support over two years. As Think Progress’ Pat Garofalo noted, these cuts were proposed despite Texas’ possession of a $8.2 billion rainy day fund.

(7) PERRY WAS A STRONG SUPPORTER OF TEXAS’S ANTI-SODOMY LAWS: Perry was a strong proponent of Texas’s anti-sodomy law that was struck down in 2003 by the Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas. Calling the law “appropriate,” Perry dismissed the Court decision as the result of “nine oligarchs in robes.” Even after being struck down, Perry supported the Texas legislature’s refusal to remove the law from its books.

(8) PERRY IS A STIMULUS HYPOCRITE WHO LOUDLY CRITICIZED FEDERAL RECOVERY MONEY BUT USED IT TO BALANCE HIS STATE’S BUDGET: As the nation struggled to avoid economic collapse in 2009, Perry was a vocal critic of Congress’s recovery package, even advocating that Texas reject the money because “we can take care of ourselves.” Months later, after Perry was able to balance the state’s budget only with the aid of billions in federal stimulus dollars, Perry again repeated that he would reject federal funding, arguing that the government “spends money they don’t have.” Five months later, Perry again took advantage of federal funding to issue $2 billion in bonds for highway improvements in Texas. Even so, the state faces a $27 billion budget deficit.

(9) PERRY SAID THAT TEXAS MIGHT HAVE TO SECEDE FROM THE UNITED STATES: One hundred and fifty years ago, Texas and other southern states seceded from the Union, resulting in a bloody Civil War. 148 years later, Perry floated the idea that Texas may again have to secede because of a federal government that “continues to thumb their nose at the American people.” Perry was roundly criticized for his proposal, yet he repeated his threat the next month on Fox News, telling host Neil Cavuto, “If Washington continues to force these programs on the states, if Washington continues to disregard the tenth amendment, who knows what happens.”

(10) DESPITE HAVING THE WORST UNINSURED RATE IN THE COUNTRY, PERRY CLAIMS THAT TEXAS HAS “THE BEST HEALTH CARE IN THE COUNTRY” : On Bill Bennett’s radio show last year, Perry claimed that “Texas has the best health care in the country.” In reality, Texas has the highest rate of uninsured residents of any state. More than one in four Texans lack coverage; the national average is just 15.4 percent. As such, there are more uninsured residents in Texas than there are people in 33 states. Despite Texas’s low coverage rates, the state has some of the most restrictive Medicaid eligibility thresholds, and Perry has even proposed dropping out of the program. Texas also has an inordinately high percentage of impoverished children, yet Perry opposed expanding the successful State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).

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Reply Sun 28 Aug, 2011 11:35 am
Of course Perry can win, and in fact, if the Obama team keeps thinking that "patent reform" is the new WPA and continues to show that fighting Dukakis spirit, I'd go so far as to give Perry the advantage should he secure the GOP nomination.

Should he be president of anything of more consequence than a glee club? Of course not.

He's made it clear in speeches and his recently released macho-man web advert that he'll do for America what he did for Texas - which probably involves shooting cheetahs recreationally with hollow-tipped bullets and creating benefit-rich employment opportunities for Americans, such as scraping toilets and salting freedom fries.

That's right, the much-vaunted "Texas Miracle" is as fake as Perry, built on the premise that working three minimum wage jobs and going without healthcare (Texas leads the nation in percentage of overall residents and children without healthcare) is some kind of economic Eden, as opposed to say an economic Elba Island.

Perry, meanwhile, is a "cowboy" who wears Armani suits and French cuffs (seriously, French cuffs?). Attacks stimulus spending while taking a heaped helping of it to bail himself out. Uses taxpayer money to enrich his corporate-lobbyist friends - and endangers the United States of America by inviting a Chinese telecom company into Texas that George W Bush's national security team warned him would pose a cyber-security threat to our military - after talking tough on the Chinese in his children's book: Fed Up.

In other words, he's a fraud

But will Democrats, and the Obama campaign, specifically, tell that story? Or will they give his myriad character deficiencies a pass, as Obama already did when Perry entered the race by questioning Obama's love of country, and Obama responded with something along the lines of "he's new to this, give him some time".

It reminds me of 2008, long before the economic crash and Obama's election became a foregone conclusion. Back then, when the race was neck-and-neck, John McCain attacked Obama's patriotism by saying things like Obama "would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign" and his Russia-gazing, vice-presidential nominee, Sarah Palin, offered that he was "palling around with terrorists". The Obama response was to laugh off these attacks or offer some variation of how McCain was a war hero who was "borrowing bad ideas from George W Bush."

It isn't just Obama, though, even though he's turned this into an art form. This is how Democrats have been running campaigns for a long time now. Republicans go straight for the character of the Democrat, realising that if they destroy the messenger, it won't matter much what the Democrat says. Democrats are called liars, flip-floppers, and variations on treasonous - and respond by telling people their Republican opponent has a healthcare plan that only cuts costs by one per cent, not the two per cent they're promising.

What is so strange about this is that trial lawyers, who make a living by "impeaching the credibility of witnesses", and Hollywood producers, who earn their paycheques by reaching us emotionally, are both pretty solid Democratic constituencies. Yet, their know-how hasn't seemed to penetrate much of the Democratic consultant class.

Rick Perry is dangerous. He is a dominionist, meaning the Biblical Law, to him, supersedes that of the US Constitution. He possesses slightly less gravitas than a half-eaten bowl of chili. The amount of hairspray he uses might actually be a threat to national security. And as conservative intellectual Bruce Bartlett put it, he's kind of an "idiot".

Perry's also already shown his willingness to do anything to win, no matter how potentially damaging to the US and its economy - starting his campaign with an attack on the patriotism of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke (specifically intended to hamstring his economic response to this crisis), who you may remember was originally put in that job by none other then George W Bush.

So call Perry dumb, make jokes about a guy who found a way to get a C in college gym, which presumably included trying to eat the eye-black and steal bases by actually, you know, stealing the bases.

Make fun of him, because it's enjoyable!

But don't for a second think this is the way to beat him in a race for the presidency. The way to do that is to tell the truth about him. That he's as fake as a three-dollar bill, all hat and no cattle, or to put it in a language Perry can understand - he's Blazing Saddles, not The Unforgiven.

Cliff Schecter is the President of Libertas, LLC, a progressive public relations firm, the author of the 2008 bestseller The Real McCain, and a regular contributor to The Huffington Post.

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Reply Sun 28 Aug, 2011 11:42 am
Thanks for the links. I will have to read them carefully.
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Reply Sun 28 Aug, 2011 01:19 pm
Reply Mon 29 Aug, 2011 09:44 am
August 29, 2011
Texas Gov. Perry became a millionaire while serving in office
By Aman Batheja | The Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Since his first race for office more than a quarter-century ago, Gov. Rick Perry has emphasized his roots as a rural farmer.

Yet Perry's bank account no longer reflects those humble beginnings as his bottom line has soared in recent years, records show, thanks largely to a handful of real estate deals that critics allege were achieved through the presidential candidates' political connections.

In just about every campaign Perry has run since 1989, allegations of his using his position for financial gain have come up. It's an issue that Perry long ago accepted would linger as long as he remains in the public eye.

"I've been in politics long enough to know that this is just a part of doing business," Perry told the Star-Telegram in 1998. "I know full well, as my wife knows, that our private lives, particularly on the financial side, becomes fair game."

While much of the scrutiny has focused on land deals Perry made while a statewide official, "real estate investor" doesn't properly capture all of his recent financial activity, just as "farmer" is too simple a description of Perry's earlier years.

Perry's financial records were obtained via online databases from the Houston Chronicle and Texas Tribune and through the Texas Ethics Commission.

When he became the state representative from Haskell in 1985, the married father of two was far from living high on the hog. The earliest federal tax return Perry has released dates to 1987, when the couple reported total income of $45,224.

Perry drew a $7,200 annual salary from his public job. In Austin, he roomed with two other lawmakers to save money. Anita Perry worked as a nurse and took in less than $8,000 a year between 1987 and 1990.

Like many other Texas farmers, Perry benefited from federal agriculture subsidies. Between 1987 and 1998, he received over $80,000 from such programs. Along with their own farm, Perry and his father, Ray Perry, also worked several hundred leased acres. Even then, Perry was moving beyond his agrarian upbringing. With his father or on his own, Perry had financial stakes in gas wells as well as real estate. Through his wife, the couple had a small investment in a local bakery. During that period, Perry also worked as a pilot.

In 1983, Perry was named to the Haskell National Bank board of directors and maintained an advisory role there until 1996. Over most of that period, the bank paid him $700 to $3,500 a year, according to available tax returns. Bank President Andrew Gannaway recalled Perry attending the board's meetings.

"I think I would say the board felt like his contributions were valuable to the bank, as were the other members'," Gannaway said.

Although his real estate successes were years off, Perry's interest in the field started earlier. Then-Gov. Bill Clements appointed him to the advisory committee of Texas A&M University's Real Estate Center in 1981. Perry also became, but never worked as, a licensed Realtor.

When he ran for agriculture commissioner in 1989, Perry got an early taste of how his finances would be put under a microscope. Incumbent Jim Hightower's campaign accused Perry of greedily billing the state tens of thousands of dollars for the cost of flying himself on state business. In 1989, Perry's reimbursements made up over half of the private aircraft mileage reimbursed in the Texas House.

Defeating Hightower changed Perry's life dramatically. His public salary as agriculture commissioner was over $70,000. His wife stopped working as a nurse. The family sold their home in Haskell and moved to Austin.

Perry quickly began investing in land in Travis County. He has said much of the property he bought in the 1990s was spots that he had hoped his family would settle on but that his wife always said were too remote.

In 1991, Perry found 29.1 acres of raw land near Lake Travis for sale via a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. liquidation auction. He purchased the lot for $55,288 with plans to build a home there but soon put it back on the market. Three years later, he sold the property for $125,000, according to tax records.

Perry bought 10 acres of undeveloped land in 1993. That property drew interest from Michael Dell, a computer magnate who needed Perry's tract to connect his new home to municipal sewer lines. Dell took the property off Perry's hands for $465,000, more than triple what Perry had paid for it two years earlier. Perry reported a $342,994 profit on the sale in his 1995 tax return.

Texas Democrats have repeatedly questioned the sale over the years, in part because Mike Toomey -- an influential lobbyist and later Perry's chief of staff -- closed the deal for Perry while Perry was out of town. Perry has always said that when the bought the land he didn't know it would be so valuable to Dell.

The next year, Perry reported a $38,000 profit from selling stock in Kinetic Concepts, a medical-bed and supply company founded by James Leininger, a longtime generous donor to Perry..

Since 1996, Perry has put most of his investments into a blind trust. A spokesman for Perry's campaign could not provide the trust's current value. Though the arrangement has shielded most of Perry's investments from public view, his finances again drew sharp attention in 2007 when he reported income of over $1 million.

Most of Perry's gains that year came from the sale of a lot in the resort community of Horseshoe Bay.

Perry bought the land from state Sen. Troy Fraser, R-Horseshoe Bay, in 2001 for $314,770. Six years later, Perry sold it for $1.1 million. Perry has attributed the gain to a favorable market for Hill Country land.

"We bought a piece of property, the property appreciated and we sold it," Perry said last year.

Critics including the liberal watchdog group Texans for Public Justice have suggested a dubious deal, considering that the man Fraser bought the land from and the man Perry sold the land to were business partners.

"I think there's a narrative developing around Rick Perry that kind of encompasses the Texas political culture in that we're a pay-to-play state," said Craig McDonald, director of Texans for Public Justice.

The Perrys have yet to file their 2010 taxes and have requested an extension, according to a representative. In 2009, Perry reported $135,278 in income as governor. From 2004 to 2009, Anita Perry reported average annual pay of $63,111 from work with the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault.

Perry's financial history will provide a contrast to that of some rivals on the national stage. While primary rival Mitt Romney made a fortune in the private sector before jumping into politics, Perry's biggest gains have taken place while he has been in elected office.

Unlike President Barack Obama, who has made millions of dollars from two books, Perry directed proceeds from one of his books to legal defense for the Boy Scouts of America and proceeds from the other to an Austin-based conservative think tank.

This report includes material from the Star-Telegram archives.

Read more: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2011/08/29/122367/texas-gov-perry-became-a-millionaire.html#storylink=omni_popular#ixzz1WQuUsFaF
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Reply Mon 29 Aug, 2011 11:43 am
“I never said it was unconstitutional.”

When Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) released his book Fed Up! in late 2010, one of his main critiques was that, over the past 50 years, the federal government has misconstrued the Constitution to establish “the massive programs of Medicare and Medicaid.” Now that he’s running for president, Perry is trying to sing a different tune on Medicare.

In an interview with the Daily Beast’s Andrew Romano, Perry explained why he thinks Social Security and Medicare are unconstitutional:

I don’t think our founding fathers when they were putting the term “general welfare” in there were thinking about a federally operated program of pensions nor a federally operated program of health care. What they clearly said was that those were issues that the states need to address. Not the federal government. I stand very clear on that.

Yesterday, at a Polk County GOP fundraiser, the Des Moines Register’s Jennifer Jacobs asked Perry to further explain why he believes Medicare is unconstitutional. In a moment of amnesia, the Texas governor declared, “I never said it was unconstitutional.” Perry went on to state, “[t]hose that have said that I said [Medicare and Social Security are] unconstitutional, I’m going to have them read the book.”

JACOBS: You talked about Social Security, can you clarify why you think Medicare is unconstitutional?

PERRY: I never said it was unconstitutional.

JACOBS: Okay, so clarify your position on Medicare.

PERRY: I look at Medicare just like I look at Social Security. They’re programs that aren’t working and we ought to have a national conversation about it. Those that have said that I said they’re unconstitutional, I’m going to have them read the book. That’s not what I said. I said that we need to have a conversation, how are we going to have programs that actually work.

In Fed Up!, Perry explains on page 51 how Medicare is a misreading of the Commerce Clause. On page 48, he calls Social Security “by far the best example” of a program that “violently toss[es] aside any respect for our founding principles.” And on page 50, he says that we have Social Security “at the expense of respect for the Constitution and limited government.”

For Perry to claim that he “never said” Medicare and Social Security are unconstitutional is either a blatant flip-flop or a significant case of amnesia. In either case, with statements like these, one has to ask: has Rick Perry read his own book?
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Reply Mon 29 Aug, 2011 02:11 pm
From yesterday's Houston Chronicle web site

OTTUMWA, Iowa - Riding high in the polls, Gov. Rick Perry rode into Iowa on Saturday with tough talk on President Obama, the economy and foreign policy and a declaration that Social Security is not only a Ponzi scheme but a "monstrous lie" for younger people.

"If you're for the status quo in America, I'm not your guy," Perry told an overflow crowd eager to see the presidential candidate at The Vine Coffeehouse, where people repeatedly sang God Bless America - once to try to encourage Perry to come in from shaking hands with people outside.

Asked by a woman in the crowd about Social Security being viewed as an entitlement program, Perry reiterated the suggestion in his anti-Washington book, Fed Up!, that the program amounts to a Ponzi scheme.

"It is a Ponzi scheme for these young people. The idea that they're working and paying into Social Security today, that the current program is going to be there for them, is a lie," Perry said. "It is a monstrous lie on this generation, and we can't do that to them."

Later, in Des Moines, when a reporter asked about the suggestion that his campaign was backing off some positions in the staunch states-rights book, Perry said, "I haven't backed off anything in my book. So read the book again and get it right."

National conversation

He told the Ottumwa crowd that for people who are drawing Social Security or near eligibility "like me," he wasn't proposing a change in the program. But he said there should be a national conversation about potential changes for others, including raising the age of eligibility and establishing a threshold based on a person's means.

"Does Warren Buffett need to get Social Security? Maybe not," he said.

0 Replies
Reply Mon 29 Aug, 2011 02:51 pm
Well, look what the cat drug in. How's you and the gorgeous wife?
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Reply Mon 5 Sep, 2011 06:42 am
Reply Mon 5 Sep, 2011 09:14 am
Now that was funny, Edgar. Truth is loaded with humor, isn't it?
0 Replies
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2011 05:39 pm
Having grown up within miles of the Perry family in West Texas I still haven't figured out how their 100 acre farm turned into a 1,000 acre ranch. Nuttin' but Red Dirt Famers.
Reply Wed 7 Sep, 2011 07:27 pm
Long time no hear, Sglass. How are you and Merry A doin'?

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