Today, in a speech in San Antonio, Rick Perry announced what many had expected: he will not run for re-election as Governor of Texas.
Perry spent the first ten minutes talking about jobs and the economy, and referring to Texas as the “new frontier,” stating that “Texas is the envy of the nation,” which is true unless you happen to be poor or uninsured.
In the speech, Perry largely stuck to what he knew, talking up Texas' low tax/low regulation atmosphere. He praised the private sector, yet even with this announcement he isn't looking to take up one of these wealth creating opportunities. He will continue to double-dip from the Governor's mansion and promote bringing more jobs to Texas.
Read more about his announcement below the jump. The only time he mentioned the actual well-being of Texans was to promote the birth of every unborn. It seems after that point, Texans are on their own.
He talked about being pro-life but unfortunately Perry's legacy is just the opposite. Almost every important factor in quality of life Texans rank below the national average including teen pregnancy, the uninsured and wages. He even made veiled poke at Wendy Davis in his wrap up saying every child no matter circumstance should have the opportunity to succeed. Of course on the face of it, it is true, but it is awfully similar to the jab he threw at her in response to her filibuster, insinuating that had she been aborted she would not have been there to fight the bill in the first place.
If I wrote a book about why Texas is so successful it would be called, “Good Luck and Dinosaurs.” There is a reason why his “simple philosophy” of “job creation not higher taxation” can only work in our state, and why our state succeeds despite the worst policies of our Governor. Texas is full of hardy, creative people and an abundance of natural resources. In his tenure Perry has uses our state's incredible wealth of natural resources to avoid creating sustainable funding mechanisms amid a growing structural deficit, and he uses the oil beneath our feet to fund the government while pretending this is replicable in every state — it is not.
Perry may be getting out while the getting is good. The demographic changes along with the results of his policies are starting to worry even the Texas Association of Business, which is concerned over a shortage of skilled labor for future business growth.
The takeaway is that Perry will remain governor until his term expires and sometime in between he may announce whether he plans to grace the national stage again as a potential presidential candidate. In short, stay tuned because in the short run Governor Perry is going nowhere.
Perry got one thing 100% correct, the next generation will eventually inherit this state and, “we alone are responsible for the type of Texas that will greet them.”
Statement from Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa:
While thousands of Texans throughout the state rally to protect women's rights and make their voices heard during the second Special Session, Perry continues to focus on his own agenda and interests.
Texans know how Perry has failed as a leader. After his three terms as governor, one out of four Texans still lack health insurance, and our public education system has been gutted. Hours after his veto of the Texas version of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, Governor Perry continued his attack on women by limiting access to decisions that should be left to the individual. Rick Perry has made a mockery of our democracy.
The Texas Democratic Party is getting the ground ready for our gubernatorial candidate. We will run an aggressive campaign to Turn Texas Blue and defeat Greg Abbott, and any other Republican candidate for governor. The new era in Texas politics is beginning.
Statement from Lone Star Project Director Matt Angle:
This is one of the few times that Rick Perry has made the majority of Texans happy. Even Rick has finally realized that the time for his politics and policies has come and gone in Texas.
Rick Perry has exploited Texas rather than serve Texans. He likes to brag about the Texas economy, when the fact is the strength of Texas lies in its resources, its intellect, and its people. He's exploited Texans to make himself look good for more than a decade.
To his credit, Rick realized that he's worn out his welcome. Texans are ready for something new, someone new. Whether you're a Democrat, Republican, or Independent, if you're a Texan, you're ready for a leader who cares more about your family than their personal ambition.