The reason I support Rick Perry . . .

No regrets.

. . . for president — aside from his successful record as the three-term governor of Texas — comes down to an instinctive, gut-level sense I rely on in daily life in dealing with people.  I’ve always had a pretty good BS detector and can usually tell within a minute or two of interacting with a person whether or not they can be trusted.  There are no specific signs I look out for — no “tells” as they say at poker tables — but rather an innate sense of when someone is on the level.

As it happens, of all the candidates who have a credible chance of defeating Obama in November, Rick Perry is the only one who doesn’t send the needle on my BS detector spinning like a whirling dervish.  And given the respective histories of the two men currently leading the race, I’m completely at a loss to explain how anyone on earth could possibly not have the same experience.  The difference in the overall level of trustworthiness among them is so stark as to invite laughter upon comparison.

Both Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney have long, well established histories of betraying the conservative movement — whether through support for government healthcare mandates, acquiescence to anthropogenic climate change hysteria, endorsing massive taxpayer bailouts of financial institutions, or favoring huge subsidies to an already profitable agricultural industry.  These aren’t the kind of chump-change concessions to political reality that legislators and executives are sometimes forced to make in the interest of the greater good of the movement.  They’re outright betrayals of principle that just a few short months ago had conservatives taking to the streets.

Rick Perry hasn’t been the perfect candidate, nor has he been the perfect conservative throughout his long career.  He has admittedly advocated proposals that have upset certain elements of the right in Texas — his Gardasil mandate and support for the Trans-Texas Corridor, for example.  But his advocacy on those matters can’t fairly be depicted as setbacks for the entire conservative movement.  Infrastructure projects and immunization requirements have never been considered anathema by the American right.  Conservatives have never taken to the streets in the millions to voice outrage over such things.

And yet we find ourselves in a place where the one man who has consistently opposed the kind of government encroachments on the free market that stirred the outrage of millions of conservatives is trailing by a fairly wide margin two men who played a major part in creating the conditions that stirred the outrage.  In Mitt Romney, we have the very architect of the healthcare legislation that is strangling the nation’s economy and costing millions of jobs.  In Newt Gingrich, we have the man who lobbied extensively and aggressively on behalf of one of the institutions responsible for the collapse in the housing markets that have led to the decimation of the value of millions of American homes.

Rick Perry has consistently and vocally opposed that kind of government interference in markets, and yet he somehow finds himself trailing the two men who could fairly be said to have helped bring about the difficulties America faces today.  Were it not for Mitt Romney’s passage of healthcare mandates in Massachusetts, there might not be an Obamacare to repeal.  Were it not for Newt Gingrich’s active lobbying on behalf of Freddie Mac, we might have been able to institute actual reforms on the government-sponsored entities that made so many irresponsible loans in the name of the “Ownership Society” that would have prevented the collapse in home prices and the resulting meltdown in the financial sector.

For all of Rick Perry’s flaws as a debater and his various verbal miscues, he’s never said or done anything that would make me question whether the man is worthy of my support.  There are no lingering doubts about whether I’ll live to regret the day decided to support him as the Republican nominee.  I don’t have to rationalize my decision to advocate on Rick Perry’s behalf.  I don’t have to convince myself that he’s a changed man in order to feel good about my choice.

All those conservatives currently supporting either Newt or Mitt have to struggle with their consciences, wondering if they’ve done right by the cause if they manage to succeed in getting them elected.  All they have to point to in their support for either of those two men is hope and change.  That is, in boosting the candidacies of either Newt or Mitt, all they can do is hope that they’ve changed.

I’d rather stand or fall with Rick Perry and all his human foibles than engage in the intellectual and moral contortions it would take for me to support either of his two biggest competitors.  Less than a year ago, it seemed unimaginable that any conservative in good standing would feel otherwise.  Unfortunately, it now seems that a majority of conservatives are no more consistent than the two men who lead the field today.

How soon they forget.

UPDATE: Welcome once again to the ‘Rons & ‘Ettes of Ace of Spades HQ, and many thanks to rdbrewer for the sidebar link!

UPDATE II: A big welcome to readers of The PJ Tatler!  Many thanks for the excerpt and Scuttlebutt link!  Please feel free to comment on the piece, and if you feel so inclined, bookmark this humble blog for future reference.

UPDATE III: Once again, many thanks to Will Franklin of Team Perry for the link in today’s edition of  The Perry Almanac!  It’s a daily email digest of the latest developments surrounding Rick Perry’s campaign for the GOP nomination, and you can sign up for it by clicking this here link.  It only takes something like 18 seconds, unless you type like I do — in which case it’s more like a day or two.  Hopefully, though, you’re better than that.

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37 Responses to The reason I support Rick Perry . . .

  1. Llorta says:

    That’s nice and all, but haven’t you heard? Newt’s already won the primary.

    • Walt says:

      So I hear! Thank God he spared us all the nastiness of getting out of the house and going to the voting booth. Not sure I could have mustered the gumption otherwise.

      BTW — you don’t happen to have a different link to the Tapper interview, do you? I blocked ABC News’s domain in my hosts file in protest against their stupid auto-play videos.

    • Diane Carder says:

      dream on. never count your chickens before they hatched. Newt’s arrogance and in consistencies will be his downfall

  2. Laura McGinnis says:

    Your best one yet!

    I will see if I can get the Tapper/Newt interview video for you!

    Thank you for being able to write what I can’t! LOL

    • Walt says:

      Thank you for the kind words and the link, Laura! I’ll cogitate on the whole thing for a bit and see if I can come up with a post on it.

      Thanks again!

  3. workingclass artist says:

    Try this link to the tapper interview.
    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/newt-gingrich-declares-im-going-to-be-the-nominee/

    Great post Walt. Perry will have 600-700 Texans campaigning and volunteering for him in Iowa.

    Asa Perry supporter I just don’t go much by polls or media hype cause the deck is always stacked against Rick Perry so I’ll wait for the votes…all of them throughout the season. It ain’t over till either Perry wins or decides it’s over.

    He did great on Leno last night.

    • Walt says:

      Thanks, WCA!

      I thought he did a great job on Leno, too. He just comes across as a guy you can trust. That’s what it all boils down to for me.

      • Llorta says:

        I thought Perry was great on Leno, too. I was surprised at how much applause he was getting from a Californian audience.

        • workingclass artist says:

          The Texas legislature meets 141 days every other year to get the states business done and we are a Big complex state. 4tates have fulltime legislatures and these are states that are in trouble & often have legendary gridlock like Sacramento. The salaries of each of these states as compared to Texas.

          California – $113,098/year
          Michigan – $79,650 /year ($12,000.00 / expenses)
          New York – $79,500/year
          Pennsylvania – $73,613/year (expenses acct.)
          * Ave size of staff = 8.9 *

          Texas – $7,200/year (Set by Ethics Commission)
          * Ave size of staff = 3 *
          http://www.empirecenter.org/html/legislative_salaries.cfm

          *The current salary (2011) for rank-and-file members of the House and Senate is $174,000 per year.*

          http://www.ncsl.org/?tabid=16701

          Each congressional representative hired 14 staff in 2000
          Each senator hired 34 staff in 2000

          By comparison in terms of Governors salaries. (Tx is in the middle of the pack & given the responsibilities of the job in a state like Texas I’d say it’s fair)

          CA – $206, 500.00/yr
          MI – $177,000.00/yr
          NY – $179,000.00/yr
          PA – $164,396.00/yr

          TX – $115,000.00/yr

          I think Perry’s message of Government Bloat at every level is striking a chord that resonates throughout the nation.

    • Diane Carder says:

      yes he did. he really did great!!

  4. ladyczarina says:

    One of the things about the Gardusul and Trans-Texas corridor issues is the way that Perry backed off of them when he found out that the citizens of Texas did not want these things. He didn’t try to force something down peoples throats. He quickly discarded them and moved on. This indicates to me that he’s a man who will listen to the American people and if it’s something overwhelmingly don’t like (like TARP, Auto Bailouts and Obamacare, for instance) he has the humility to listen to the people and back off.

  5. t-bird says:

    From your fingertips to God’s keyboard…

    Come on, Rick, get your act together!

    Can you imagine a part-time Congress? Congressmen who would actually have to live at home, out of the reach of lobbyists?

  6. GMLand says:

    Great article. I shared it with my fellow Tennesseans who are on Team Perry with me and all those that are soon to be!

  7. Andy says:

    I too support Perry, and only him. I will not vote for the other republican candidates as I think their personal characters are basically on the same level as Obama’s (zip). If most conservatives can so easily fall for people like Cain, Gingrich, or Romney– then this country is in deep trouble. America will eventually elect the leader it deserves, which may be a frightening thing. America’s biggest problem is not the economy, or national security, etc. The biggest problem is that Americans have turned their backs on God. And this applies to most so-called Christians. Broadly speaking, the religious right is not religious, nor is it right. Most ‘Christian’ churches throughout our land are centers of feel-good-about-yourself houses of entertainment, where hardly a word of truth is ever preached (or a bible opened). The problem with this is that God is sovereign and He has absolute attributes which define Him. (Read A.W. Pink) He will not bless a land where most people utterly reject Him. Today, most ‘conservatives’ are so easily swayed into supporting the very people who have caused many of America’s current problems due to their total lack of discernment: They have eyes but cannot see, and are not much different than the average democrat. America needs to fall on its face and repent, and this includes myself. To understand America’s place in world history, just read the old testament.

    • Kiana says:

      Andy,
      “The danger to America is not Barack Obama but a citizenry capable of entrusting an inexperienced man like him with the Presidency. It will be far easier to limit and undo the follies of an Obama presidency than to restore the necessary common sense and good judgment to a depraved electorate willing to have such a man for their president. The problem is much deeper and far more serious than Mr. Obama, who is a mere symptom of what ails America . Blaming the prince of the fools should not blind anyone to the vast confederacy of fools that made him their prince. The Republic can survive a Barack Obama. It is less likely to survive a multitude of Idiots such as those who made him their president.”

      (Czech Republic Observer, April 28, 2011)

      • Andy says:

        Kiana,

        Good article. Thanks. What I attempted draw attention to was the reason for such lack of discernment. After seeing Jeremiah Wright preach, “God d… America,” I remember thinking ‘Obama is toast. Americans will never stand for this.’ Then they elected him. I was much more disheartened with the American people than with Obama. The people are the problem, not the politicians. Politicians only give us what we want, or what we allow them to get away with.

        • Llorta says:

          Yup, G D America, US of KKK A, typical white person, spread the wealth around, etc.

          I was optimistic that McCain would beat Obama simply because I thought surely America wouldn’t elect such a person.

          For the first time in my adult life, I was ashamed of my country. Being anti-American, black liberation theology/marxist/racist, anti-capitalist, all that is excusable if you’ve got the politically correct skin color and promise “hope & change.”

          What’s even sadder? With all the stuff with Cain, there is still a sizable portion of Cain-supporters among “conservatives,” and Cain has maintained far more support than Perry. And before that, it was Palin. It isn’t just the other side that’s a sucker for personality and minority status, it’s us, too.

  8. Niedermeyer's Dead Horse says:

    I don’t have to convince myself that he’s a changed man in order to feel good about my choice.

    You could have ended the argument right there. In itself, that is a powerful statement.

  9. DocinPA says:

    I had REALLY high hopes about Perry. His utter inarticulateness during the debates was devastating and probably fatal. Obama MUST be removed from office. So, what to do? My biggest concern is that when the Obamatrons go nuclear on whoever the nominee is, someone like Romney just wouldn’t fight back. For all of his faults (and he sure as hell has a bunch), I can’t see Newt not responding. Calling Obama a “Saul Alinsky radical from the South Side of Chicago” on Hannity’s show the other night was a good start. And I’m sure that he could be convinced to throw Fannie and Freddie under the bus.

    • workingclass artist says:

      Obama is a sham debater. Perry would beat him hands down in a debate.

      He’d win because he’d ask Obama the questions we would ask him. He’d be blunt. He would really ask him “How’d you manage to lose 2 million jobs?”

      He’d ask him “Why did you tell our enemies when we were leaving?”

      “Why would you delay the pipeline when it brings jobs to Americans”

      “Why did you ignore the border?”

      On and on it would be “Citizen” Rick Perry asking simple questions that Americans think & Governor Perry contrasting his ideas and his record. That’s his strength…He says out loud what conservatives have been thinking or saying to each other. We see ourselves in him because he’s like us.

  10. workingclass artist says:
  11. Hill Country Texan says:

    I will vote for Perry because he is the best cadidate out there. Period.

  12. ml says:

    I am disappointed with Perry because he didn’t do too well on the debate. I did watch the debate for awhile, then I stop watch it because I was so tired of watching Perry and Mitt Romney attacked one another. They are so negative. Romney will not get my vote if he is the nominee. He doesn’t have a good campaign. Romney has been spend more time going to California or Florida and go the weathly fundraiser’s house where they have party for him or visit Wall Street where he is making money instead doing townhall or making speeches. When he found out he is losing the polls this week, Romney wanted Gov. Christie to help him out. Romney need to do the campaign on his own; not Gov. Christie. It is not going to work; it is too late.

  13. workingclass artist says:

    I have to post this comment from a thread at redstate because it’s such a visceral reaction to Perry’s new Faith ad (Linked above) & because it relates to Walt’s “gut” feeling that he writes about so well in his post. The fact that I live in Texas and see the results of good conservative governance by Perry re-enforces the original gut feeling I had when I voted for Perry in his first statewide race.

    “I must be becoming a wuss…this ad made me cry.
    I guess I am thoroughly disgusted with people of faith being mocked, bullied, marginalized and disrespected and this ad is so real. I love how Perry is unashamed and even exudes confidence when he says stuff like this. He will connect with so many people without turning them off or coming off self-righteous….”

    for the entire comment it’s at http://www.redstate.com/erick/2011/12/02/i-dont-understand-why-theyd-only-run-it-once/

    Folks are tired of glib & slick. They want authentic & to be treated with respect as Americans. This ad speaks to anybody who has been ridiculed for their faith & that can unite Americans. These ads are simple, direct and visceral…which is pretty much who Perry is & why it works.

    • Llorta says:

      wca, I have a different take on the “faith” ad. I didn’t like it. Politicians use the word “faith” because it is a meaningless word that polls well and makes everyone feel warm & fuzzy (except those flaming atheists/liberals who are never happy).

      It isn’t about faith, it’s about faith in Christ.

      If one is only going to go halfway, it’s better not to go at all. But that’s just me, I’m sure it will play well to the masses.

  14. Chris says:

    There is no other candidate to support. There is one true conservative who can win and that is Rick. I have done my best at every article I find about Perry to counter all those who trash and distort his record in comment sections. It may seem small but we have to start to change the message. Rick is the one to turn this mess around. We are running out of time for our country. Romney is more of the same and who know what Newt is for. Newt is a loose cannon w/ his BS that comes out of no where. Please continue w/ your blog to fight for us.

  15. MDH3 says:

    This is an excellent piece and perfectly articulates the reasons I’ve chosen to support Perry. Great work.

  16. poljunkie says:

    great article! well said!

  17. M. B. Rice says:

    Great post. You have summed up exactly what I felt, but couldn’t shape an argument for. Gov. Perry is an old-fashioned retail politician: he presses the flesh as if he really is enjoying himself. Perhaps the MSM has emphasized his stumbles in the debates to push voters away from his strengths. He is reminiscent of the “happy warrior” that Reagan was; his evident enjoyment of life, his pride in Texas and the USA, his honorable service to both all speak well of him. His pride does not reek of Gingrich’s hubris. That he is being discounted by people I respect (Krauthammer & VDH, for example) makes we wonder at their judgment, rather than at my own. He is not perfect, but as you state in your post, I don’t have to hope that this candidate is not as bad as I feared.

    • Llorta says:

      I’m not sure who VDH is, but Krauthammer is a liberal Republican. I’m actually a big fan of Krauthammer, too, but he is what he is (a bit of an elitist snob) – I consider him insightful & reliable except in matters of strict conservatism. I believe he got started in politics working under president Carter, lol.

  18. Walt says:

    Thanks to everyone for taking the time to read and comment on this piece. I do hope you’ll forward a link along to anyone you know who may still be considering their options. Despite what anyone says, there’s still time for Perry to pick up steam and make a strong showing in Iowa, and he can use that as momentum going forward. He doesn’t need a win there — though that would obviously be nice. But, he’s got one hell of an organization on the ground and reinforcements showing up in droves from the Lone Star State.

    And thank you all for your input. I think the quality of commenters who have gravitated here to The Damn Dirty RINO speaks well of Governor Perry’s supporters as a whole. They’ve been universally thoughtful and articulate and I couldn’t be happier to be associated with such a great group of solid conservatives.

  19. ladyczarina says:

    As I’ve said here before, I think the Newt’s going to self-implode. There are already a lot of articles and pundits who know him well who are voicing that same opinion. Now, with the exit of Cain, I believe people are going to have to get serious and look for the candidate who’s track record and history of strongly held conservative beliefs exemplify that he’s the real conservative in the bunch. I’ve been in the Perry camp since he came in and am staying with him for the long haul. He’s slow and steady and come from way behind in elections before Hopefully people will wake up in time!

    • ladyczarina says:

      P.S. Thanks a million to Walt for another excellent essay at the RINO.

    • Llorta says:

      Yep, with Cain officially gone, and the imminent self-destruction of Newt (he can’t help himself), this race is about to get wide open, which will benefit Perry the most.