All the political news you can use these last few weeks has been about Republican candidates not named Governor Goodhair. Very swiftly, the media focus has centered around Cruz, Paul, Rubio, and Bush (in that order). Earlier this year, Rick Perry was making all sorts of visible rounds.
Well, he’s still making the rounds, except with fewer eyes on him. When Hillary announced on Sunday, Perry tweeted a petition to ‘Stop Hillary’…and sign up for his RickPAC email list. Not very substantive, and he didn’t get into news reports about Republican responses to the announcement. Odd for an allegedly important presidential candidate, right?
On Friday, he told the National Republican Convention Leadership Forum that “[i]t’s going to be a ‘show me, don’t tell me’ election where voters look past what you say to what you’ve done. On Thursday, Perry visited the Iowa State Capitol to meet lawmakers (politicking in state grounds?) whose endorsement he inevitably will hope for. He met some homeschoolers because “[t]here’s nothing more precious to people than their time, and where they spend their time is where their heart is.” Those homeschoolers also went on something called a “prayer walk,” whatever that is.
This is Governor Gone Mild, boilerplate news about a Republican presidential candidate. However, the reason he’s so invisible right now is that no one seems to care about Rick Perry at the moment – there’s not even speculation on when he will announce, and he’s mentioned only lightly in early analyses of the race. But maybe there’s something else at work, at least until the race heats up around Labor Day.
Rick Perry is no one’s idea of fresh, and he fits none of the molds that the other contenders fill easily. He’s not from an immigrant family, he’s no longer a prominent tea partier, he’s not a libertarian, and he’s not the establishment’s choice. Maybe Republicans will do the old cycle and he’ll shuffle to the top towards the end of the year, but maybe he never had a lane on this track in the first place.
One does hope he gets some attention though; seeing him skid through the dirty water of his state indictment on the national stage will be must-watch politics. Even Tom DeLay sees that disaster coming from a mile away.