An orchestrated "grass-roots" movement to get Texas Governor Rick Perry into the Republican presidential race is beginning to take shape. Politico has presented numerous statements from Texas politicos and others, most of whom are supportive. CNN markets Perry as a governor who "means what he says". Real Clear Politics is rhapsodizing about how Rick Perry is winning hearts.
Rick Perry himself is currently ambiguous about his future political plans, merely saying he will make an announcement in late June. However, the Perry camp has already hired a former Gingrich staffer, Elizabeth Vaughan, to run their Georgia campaign. And Perry is even behaving like a presidential candidate; at the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans on June 18th, he delivered a presidential-like speech calling upon conservatives to stop apologizing for celebrating life, noting that it is fruitless to reach out to people on the left since there's nothing we can do or say to make them happy. An excellent point by Perry.
Rick Perry clearly has solid conservative credentials, championing spending reductions, tax cuts, and tort reform during his administration. Perry is also a renowned social conservative, opposing elective abortion, gay marriage, and embryonic stem cell research; you can read Perry's overall platform HERE. The Texas Tribune warns us not to underestimate Rick Perry; not only is he Texas' longest-serving governor in its history, but he has never lost an election.
But Rick Perry has a fatal flaw, one that is being completely ignored by the media wankers. The mass kidnapping of 464 FLDS children from their community in Eldorado, Texas, instigated by a crank call from a looney-tune named Rozita Swinton, took place during his watch. An operation of this magnitude could not have been launched without approval at the highest levels of state government. Worse yet, Gov. Perry defended the actions of CPS after the fact; on May 15th, 2008, Perry spokeswoman Krista Piferrer said the governor retained full confidence in the agency, noting that "The governor is very proud of the work being done by CPS...CPS has handled a very complex situation both professionally and compassionately."
That so-called "professionalism" and "compassion" were called into question just one week later on May 22nd when the 3rd Court of Appeals in Austin ruled that Texas child welfare authorities acted improperly in removing the children from the FLDS Church's YFZ Ranch in Eldorado. Ultimately, 440 children were returned to their parents. Wikipedia contains a more detailed chronology of the operation.
The estimated price tag for the entire operation was set at $12.4 million, which did not necessarily include ongoing fees of caseworkers and lawyers. Thus a governor who marketed himself as pro-family and an economic conservative ended up squandering $12.4 million of public money on an anti-family operation.
Unless Rick Perry comes to his senses and admits he made an error in judgment, the same way that Orrin Hatch has now admitted his Yes vote on TARP was in error, Perry is not suited to be president. The White House is no place for someone who could be portrayed as a "child kidnapper".