At the Republican Leadership Conference this week in New Orleans and even prior to that, I have engaged in conversations with Republican politicos, donors, professional fundraiser, etc. about a possible Rick Perry bid for President.Inevitably, the conversation goes like this:
THEM: What do you think?ME: He could be the guy to seal the deal as the anti-Romney guy, but I'm not sure anyone can close the gap.THEM: He's a formidable politician and great at retail politics. Almost Clintonesque in how he connects with voters. Much better than Romney.ME: Well, that's an added bonus. i hear that about Tim Pawlenty too. And Bachmann fires up the crowd better than probably anyone but Cain.THEM: Well, yes, but on Perry, the big downside (their voice grows deeper and whispering) is all his personal baggage. You know what I mean.ME: No.THEM: Well, he has all sorts of problems and they'll destroy him with it. That's why I don't think he'll get in. Everybody in Texas knows about this stuff.
Truth be told, I hear this about this with every candidate. Every Republican Presidential candidates is a closet homosexual who engages in mass orgies with women and boys while keeping multiple mistresses on the side hidden from their wives all while funneling highway contracts to their best friends for a kickback.Every Republican is like that if you believe those candidates' opponents within the Republican Party.Rarely do these rumors ever actually become true.Here's the thing about Perry and why I typically call bull on these rumors.Rick Perry was first elected to the Texas Senate in 1984.In 1990, Perry challenged the incumbent Agriculture Commissioner of Texas and won. He was re-elected in 1994.In 1998, Perry ran for and was elected Lt. Governor of Texas, then replaced George W. Bush when Bush became President.Perry was elected Governor in his own right in 2002, again in 2006, and again last year.Last year's race saw Perry face Kay Bailey Hutchison, a ruthless politician who was backed by the Bushies with a unified front and Karl Rove, who trained under Lee Atwater.None of the evil, awful Rick Perry skeletons ever made it out of the closet even against all that.So we can keep playing the "Rick Perry has skeletons" game, but the odds are pretty damn good if there are any skeletons they'll stay in the closet.