Washington Post's widely-read political blog, The Fix, has given Rick Perry the undesirable Fixy Award for Worst Candidate of 2012.
There was the decidedly odd speech that Perry gave in New Hampshire. There was a series of debate performances in which Perry seemed (at best) thinly-versed on the issues of the day. And then there was Perry's brain freeze in a November debate in which he simply could not remember the third federal agency he wanted to eliminate – a lock-up that he punctuated with his now-famous “Oops.” (Even these many months later, the Fix stomach churns watching the Perry clip; it has to be among the most awkward moments in the history of politics.)
While it was probably over for Perry before “oops,” it was definitely over for him afterwards. He finished fifth in the Iowa caucuses, sixth (with ONE percent) in the New Hampshire primaries and then dropped out of the race before the South Carolina primary. (In a final coup de grace of bad political judgment, Perry endorsed the presidential candidacy of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.)
Rick Perry will likely never shake his “oops” moment because it was more than a gaffe. His whole campaign was an “oops” moment, one terrible mistake after another that revealed not a bad campaign but an incompetent, know-nothing candidate. Perry somehow managed to add to the damage the national reputation of Texas governors done by President Bush.
The fact that he's publicly considering running for re-election in 2014 and possibly for president again in 2016 is downright sad.