In Which I Defend Rick Perry After He Stumbles Hard In Debate

It’s no secret that I do not like Rick Perry as a candidate and politician. I do not trust him. He isn’t that likeable to me. Looking at his record, he appears to be another in a long line of Big Government Republicans. I did not like how nasty the primaries became the minute he joined in. And, he doesn’t seem to really have answers, just platitudes. But, I am tending to avoid the bickering over the candidates, the “there’s no way in HELL I’m supporting this guy!” Obama must be defeated, this country cannot afford 4 more years of hopeNdope. And don’t forget, we must retake the Senate and keep the House. We could end up with Ronald Reagan’s recently decanted clone in the WH, and it would mean nothing if we do not control all of Congress. There are too many Democrat/Obama initiatives that must be fixed and repealed immediately.

That said, here’s what happened with Perry

(Business Insider) At today’s CNBC debate Texas Gov. Rick Perry was asked a question about his tax and spending plan — but completely blew an otherwise strong answer by looking like a complete fool.

Perry was listing the three Cabinet agencies he wants to abolish — and forgot the third one.

From the transcript:

Perry: And I will tell you, it is three agencies of government when i get there that are gone. Commerce, Education, and the — what’s the third one there? Let’s see…Okay. Commerce, Education, and the —”

Ron Paul: EPA?

Perry: EPA, there you go.

Moderator: Seriously — is epa one you are talking about?

Perry: No, sir, no, sir. we are talking about the — agencies of government — EPA needs to be rebuilt. >>

Moderator: you can’t — you can’t name the third one?

Perry: The third agency of government I would — I would do away with Education, the — >> Commerce…Commerce and, let’s see. I can’t. The third one, I can’t. Sorry. Oops.

About 15 minutes later, he finally remembered it was the Department of Energy. Let’s watch

Pundits all over the place are saying that this is the end of Perry’s campaign. His Intrade stock dropped heavily. The headline for the BI story cited in this post is “PERRY DEBATE DISASTER: This Is The Moment That Officially Killed His Campaign — For Good.” First of all, I don’t think so. This “gaffe” will soon be forgotten. If race baiting didn’t stop Joe Biden from being picked to be VP, if saying he’d been to 57 states with one more to go didn’t stop Obama, if demeaning people who believe in God and guns didn’t stop Obama, if (insert your favorite Obama craziness here), then this won’t damage Perry.

Second, and here is where I truly defend Perry, candidates are constantly having their heads stuffed with material, everything from foreign affairs, economic policies, etc, to who was a big donor they need to greet by name. All that material floating around in one’s head can interfere with the ability to remember even basic things. I’m sure this has happened to you (though, of course, you and I are not running for president).

Everyone can have a time where they forget something basic that they might have said a thousand times. Now, put yourself up on a stage in front of tons of people, with tons more tuning in on radio and TV.

So, let’s not over-react. Rick Perry will find some other real way to flame out. The video is still rather painful, though.

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12 Responses to “In Which I Defend Rick Perry After He Stumbles Hard In Debate”

  1. Phineas says:

    One big difference, though, is the media reaction: the letter after the name makes a huge difference. Obama got kid glove treatment from the MSM for his gaffes. Candidate Biden’s were more covered, but he was never a serious candidate, and they were likewise ignored when he became the VP nominee. Perry will get no such favors from the MSM, and a lot of people sadly still take them seriously.

  2. Good points. I was listening to Beck this morning on the way to work, and they were playing the audio from an Obama pre-election speach where he stumbled and bumbled all over the place. The media mostly ignored it, like with Wright and Ayers.

  3. It isn’t Perry forgetting the Department that killed his campaign- it was more than the ‘opps’ moment, it was his entire debate. Read my commentary of it, including my review of Perry’s performance, over at:

  4. gitarcarver says:

    I think most people are willing to forgive and forget gaffes.

    It is difficult to spend a great deal of time in front of a live audience and not say something stupid.

    We, the people, are part of the problem. We take gaffes and turn them into some sort of weapon rather than laughing and saying “that’s funny.” We then get into the ridiculous world of defending the gaffe itself. I talked to someone once who swore Obama’s famous gaffe of “57 states” was actually correct when one factors in US territories.

    He was serious.

    After awhile, one has to wonder how many strikes Perry gets. You have the famous supporting of tuition breaks for illegal immigrants. You have the famous “hunting camp” incident which could have been handled quickly and easily but instead the Perry camp let it drag out. Perry’s ad on Romney had some class warfare in it.

    And now this.

    Maybe Perry just isn’t ready for the big stage yet. Maybe that is what this comes down to.

    Here is where I stand on Perry: 1) his backing of tuition breaks for illegals is a troubling decision for me. Illegal immigration is a huge issue to conservatives and Perry showed neither leadership nor vision.
    2) The class warfare ad. That is a tactic of the left. Don’t play with their playbook if you want my vote.
    3) The gaffe from the debate last night. It is not only that he doesn’t sound as if he has the facts, but when he makes a mistake he has a deer in the headlight look to him. When debating or not in a controlled environment, he sounds lost to some extent. The last guy we say who looked like that is in the White House and we know how that is turning out.

    At this moment for me, Perry is a “no go.”

  5. Word says:

    I am not criticizing ANY candidate. Period. No matter who is nominated I will vote for them. I will campaign for them and I will give money to them.

    This election is too important. It is bigger then any one man., It is bigger then any candidate and it is more important then my personal favorite.

    No matter….Whomever is nominated I will vote for……..anyone is better then Obama.

    Anyone has my vote.

  6. gitarcarver says:

    I agree that any candidate is better than Obama, but at the same time I want the best candidate to get the nomination.

  7. david7134 says:

    Perry is not a conservative. That is why he can’t list the agencies that he desires to cut. A true conservative would have a list imprinted in this brain of the destruction he would unleash on the Washington establishment on his election. It would be a part of his every day existance. Now I have had brain freeze. I have forgotten a name or a word. But that is not allowed for the setting in which Perry is playing. If Perry doesn’t think like a conservative, then he is not one.

  8. You are very right, GT. Perry has a lot of problems, and, personally, I’d rather have Romney. At least we know what his deal is, and what we will get.

    I do try and avoid criticising the candidates, Word, even Ron Paul (though he has zero chance.) We can’t blow up our own candidates and give material to Camp Obama.

    Perry is somewhat a fiscal conservative, but, he is definitely a big government guy. And to fixed on social issues for my tastes.

  9. gitarcarver says:

    I do try and avoid criticising the candidates, Word, even Ron Paul (though he has zero chance.) We can’t blow up our own candidates and give material to Camp Obama.

    I take the opposite approach.

    In WWII, the units with the most losses were those that were thrown into battle without veterans around them, or who had no battle experience. Once “bloodied,” units and the men within them, learned what it took to survive and win.

    I would much rather GOP candidates go through the ringer now, rather than Obama and his minions pulling all sorts of “surprises” when the GOP candidate is debating Obama. In other words, I would rather our guy be bloodied and battle tested than a feel good, rah rah, “nothing can harm me!” type candidate.

    I think that as the debates have gone on, you have seen all of the candidates do better. They are more feisty and commanding.

    I want that when they debate Obama and would rather they practice now than be beaten up when debating Obama.

  10. Word says:

    I do not mind the right going after its candidates….

    As long as….

    As long as you do not stay home come election time…..

    As long as you do not campaign for whomever is nominated.

    As long as the fervor to rid ourselves of Obama and the democrats is more important than rather Perry Or Romney or Cain or Paul is the candidate.

    As long as……

    The fervor of defeating the left remains unbridled then by all means bash away…. Just remember that when your least favorite is nominated.

  11. Word says:

    Also I think had Herman Cain EVER ran for anything….all this stuff would have come out by now.

    But since he never has there was never really any need to pull the swift boating on him.

    Now Romney an Perry and Gingrich and Santorum and Paul and Bachman and the rest have all run for public office…have all been out there…….

    have all been vetter and CAIN has not.

    Will he survive? I hope so but I doubt it. They have only just STARTED going after the black man who DARED……..

    Who DARED to leave the PLANTATION.

  12. gitarcarver says:


    I think you meant “As long as you campaign for whomever is nominated” instead of “do not campaign.

    I look at the stage of candidates and see every one of them being equal to, or better than Obama.

    Of course I am going to work for the nominee and in the process defeat Obama. I just want that nominee to be prepared.

    It is getting down to crunch time for me as far as voting in the primary. I always vote and love doing it.

    So I am with ya on your “as long as….” points.

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