Rick Perry’s Move to the Middle Won’t Work

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“Compromise is not a dirty word.”

With those six words, Rick Perry, the former Texas governor currently under indictment for abuse of power, laid the foundation for his next great lie: that he is a respectable moderate Republican here to offer solutions to the country.

This was the same politician who floated the idea of secession the minute the United States elected a black president. The same politician that compared homosexuality to alcoholism. The same politician that would rather leave millions of Texans without health care than breathe the words “Affordable Care Act.”

To even imagine Perry is a moderate, you’d have to want to be lied to.

So naturally, the press ate it up.

It started with a glowing piece in the Texas Tribune , and was most recently seen in a Politico profile titled,  “A new, more moderate Rick Perry”. Perry’s crafting an image as a reasonable person who can work things out with the other side, because Amurricah wants solutions. Never mind that his stump speech is filled with the same bogus argument for the “Texas Miracle” that failed him in the past.

And for Perry, it’s working. It’s working because the general purview of mainstream reporters early on in presidential campaigns is to lift up those with no chance and tear down the leaders, thus ensuring a seemingly close and competitive competition that will generate ratings and page views, evidence be damned.

Then again, the only reason it’s easy for Perry to manipulate his image now is because he’s basically a non-candidate. In Iowa, and in GOP presidential polls with and without Romney, Perry hasn’t cracked 5%. He’s running second in his own state behind Ted Cruz, and positioning himself as against the Tea Party and with the new “Republican Rise” model that Jeb Bush is championing.

Rick Perry’s move to the middle isn’t surprising. It’s predictable, as he’s  chasing corporate dollars. He knows the grassroots won’t back him, and his only chance while testing the waters is to rely on what he knows best: corporate cronyism.

None of that is moderate. All of it is typical Perry. And like so much of his time as governor in Texas, Rick Perry’s attempt to con the public that he’s moderate isn’t going to work.


About Author

Phillip Martin

Currently the Research and Policy Director for Progress Texas and the Texas Research Institute, Phillip Martin writes occasional long-form pieces for BOR that promote focused analysis and insight into Texas politics. Born and raised in Austin, Phillip started working in politics in 2003 and started writing on BOR in the summer of 2005. Phillip has worked for the Texas Democratic Trust, the Texas Legislative Study Group, and now the Progress Texas family. He is a lifelong Houston Astros fan, a loyal Longhorn, and loves swimming at Barton Springs Pool.

1 Comment

  1. You should have mentioned that Perry once worked on a Gore campaign and started his Texas legislative career elected as a democrat. He’ll say whatever to get elected.

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