It wasn't that long ago that what I now predict as inevitable would have been unthinkable. A few months back, Gov Perry was wrestling with a Texas-sized budget shortfall, Trump was at the top of the primary polls, and when asked, Perry responded that he lacked an interest in running for President.
At this time, what America desperately needs is an economic policy that works for America, that restores American jobs, American manufacturing, American economic strength and growth. With 9% unemployment and an economy that is flatlining - it's the jobs, stupid. Perry's slogan "Get America WORKING again" is the correct counterpart to the failures of Obama. The Obama experiment has failed. The candidate we need is one who will challenge fundamentally the whole failed edifice of massive deficits, Obamacare mandates and Government control, the over-spending and over-regulating, and the failed Keynesian 'stimulus' claims.
In just one week, Perry has done more than any candidate since Trump to get under the Obama team's skin, and he has done it on the right issues and right grounds: It's jobs, it's spending, it's the debt, it's the deficit.
Why Perry and not Bachmann, Romney, Cain, or even Palin? There are points to recommend other candidates, but only one candidate can tout such successful, conservative, long-standing executive branch governance:
- 10 years of experience as Governor of one of the largest and most job-creating states in the nation.
- A consistent pro-life, pro-gun and pro-traditional marriage record.
- Presided over 10 years of balanced budgets, including two times where Texas was faced with serious shorfalls, and despite the usual liberal handwringing and demands to deplete the Texas rainy day fund and raise taxes, Perry and the Republicans in the Texas lege did neither, keeping the spending in check.
- Passed tort reform and presided over other policies that have been business-friendly and helped Texas lead in job creation.
Perry hits the right spots in both being Tea Party fiscal-conservative (a la Bachmann, Cain) while also having the executive Governing experience to tout a record (a la Pawlenty, Mitch Daniels, etc). Voter don't need to choose between a moderate ex-Governor versus a conservative with thin governing experience. Perry is more ready to be President than Obama. Sarah Palin, if she does not run, will likely endorse him as she endorsed him in 2009.
There will be much more that Perry will bring to the table. Sure, there is plenty for his detractors to bring. You don't be Governor of a big state for 10 years without some questionable decisions or controversy, and already the liberal media knives are out for Perry, pouncing on every statement. But there is something else Perry can bring besides a record of conservative governance that should satisfy the braod swath of conservative Republican voters. Perry can fight, and he can win.
As the survivor of multiple campaigns, Perry has learned what worked and what didn't work. Back in 2009, Perry was facing a challenge from Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison. To many, and early polls suggested, he was a goner. But in July 2009, I predicted a Perry victory and that KBH would stay in the Senate. I was right. On April 15th, 2009, I joined fellow citizens in Austin at a Tea Party. Two statewide officials were there - Michael Williams (Railroad Commissioner, who is now running for Congress in Texas CD-25), and Governor Rick Perry. Gov Perry got heat for 'secession' comments, but his support of that "Tea Party" rally and others helped solidify his position with the voters longing for leaders to stand up to DC; he ran and won the GOP primary by running against Washington DC (and Kay "bailout" Hutchison). When EPA tried taking over Texas regulators and overriding their rules, Texas fought back and sued; Perry took Obama to task over the Federal failures to secure the border; Perry said no to the 'race to the top' funding with strings; and Perry refused to go along with the Federal govt to change unemployment compensation to chase stimulus dollars. Perry has shown the stark policy differences we face and in the process got a lot of political mileage by standing up to the Washington leviathan. Perry stood with Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott as he joined with other state AGs in the lawsuit against Obamacare.
When I predicted a Perry victory in July 2009, I did it in response to an interesting statistic - Perry's twitter followers far outnumbered Kay Bailey Hutchison's; Perry tapped the social networks, online media, and developed an innovative and efficient 2010 campaign, built around a compelling message. A new breed of campaigns on the Republican side in 2010 took lessons from Obama's 2008 campaign and leverage social media and related technologies. It's both telling and instructive that Rick Perry used the Redstate gathering to announce for President. It's a recognition of Redstate and online activism as a nerve center for conservative thought and action.
Perry has the record, he has the conservative credentials and record, he has a good record on jobs to tout a better way, and he has the campaign skills and organizational savvy to go the distance and win both the primary and the general election. That is why in one short week, he has bested every other candidate, included supposed front-runner Romney, in polls; that is why the media and Obama campaign have already started attacking him. Some are noticing that the Obama and media attacks don't hurt him, and for an interesting reason. These attacks are ignoring the electorate. George Will, when asked if Perry was smart to go to the Houston prayer rally, replied "Very smart." Jon Huntsman is dismayed that Perry doubts global warming? Wow, is Huntsman also on the Perry payroll? that's like giving Perry free advertising.
In 1920, Warren Harding won one of the biggest blowout elections in the 20th century, running at a time to economic despair on a campaign of a "return to normalcy". What Harding and his voters saw in the Wilson-era enlarged Federal government was an abberation from the American way. Not only did President Harding restore the balance - 'normalcy' - reducing taxes, spending and Federal Government interference left over from a regulated WWI economy - he restored the economy and set off, with his successor Calvin Coolidge, the Roaring Twenties. In the 1980s, President Reagan presided over a similar restoration after the malaise and stagflation of the Carter era.
As 2012 approaches, the American cycle of experimenting with liberalism, experiencing its failures, then rejecting it, will have to happen again. There has been a lot of talk in recent years of the "new normal", but there is nothing normal about massive deficits, 9% unemployment, and the downgrading of our credit. America as we knew it seems to be slipping away. We have one last opportunity to make it right in 2012, to restore America's greatness and to "get America Working again." Rick Perry will win the Republican nomination on his combined strength as a solid conservative and an experience and successful governor. He will run against the failed Obama economy by touting Texas success and pointing the way to a more successful model - creating jobs, opportunity and private sector growth, instead of deficits, dependency and government control. Obama will try to make Perry the next GWBush III, but he will fail to sway voters with it. Rick Perry will pull one from the Reagan playbook and ask: "So how's that last 4 years of change worked out for you?"
For all these reasons, Texas Governor Rick Perry will be our next President.