It seems like several lifetimes ago, but in fact it was exactly one year ago today that the world got its first full day of Rick Perry, presidential candidate.
With all the pomp, not to mention circumstance, attendant on such an august occasion, the governor of Texas deigned to allow voters to elevate him to the highest seat in the land, if not the free world.
Voters took a pass, as it turned out, but that doesn't mean they weren't entertained.
Perry 2012 passed in a blur of "oops," alleged painkillers, faux pas after faux pas, and head-scratching incidents that filled the days until that sad moment five months later when he gave up the ghost.
America learned some things. Like these five things:
5. Texas doesn't really like Rick Perry Sure, he'd been elected and re-elected since the Earth cooled, but never with any great enthusiasm. He just always seemed to be there, outflanking whatever opponent showed up, willing to say anything or embrace any far-out philosophy if it would get voters to the GOP primary booths, because as he well knew nothing matters after you win the GOP primary.
You can adopt the most radical of far-right policies in the GOP race, and it won't make any difference in the general election, despite what such ever-hopefuls as Bill White and Chris Bell would tell supporters.
Despite that willingness to bend, Perry was always more tolerated than beloved by the Texas electorate.
4. America is really tired of Texas swagger in politicians George W. Bush was lame with his Andover prep-meets-Midland ways of edifyin' the public about a little thing we call being Texan, and Perry didn't make things much better.
Perry is demonstrably more of a Texan than Bush -- a farm-bred Aggie, of all things -- but America had had enough of all that by the time 2012 came around. We're sure them there freedom-hatin' despots out there in the desert deserve to learn that a Texan means what he says and says what he means, but Perry never got the chance once Bush poisoned the well.
3. Painkillers plus campaigning equals: A Grateful Dead tour Perhaps no human being alive took such unadulterated joy in receiving a bottle of maple syrup as Rick Perry did in New Hampshire.
Whether the fun derived from back-surgery recovery protocol and prescriptions was heatedly denied by the Perry camp, but we're pretty sure we heard someone giggling in the background as they said it. 2. You can't blame the media when everyone can see what you're doing The first defensive move by an embattled GOP candidate is to blame the media. That step, however, requires that the media be acting in some sort of filtering mode, interpreting and describing things that are going on out of sight of the public.
Perry's faux pas were all made in the harsh light of the public spotlight, for all to see. Even GOP voters could see how the guy messed up.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the mission of the Houston Press. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Houston’s stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
1.Keep hope alive Perry is making noises about running again. We guess this is to be expected, so it doesn't look like he was left completely with his tail between his legs.
On the other hand, this is the dude who tried to raise cash out of his "oops" moment. Self-awareness has not proven to be a strong point in Rick Perry, Presidential Candidate.
So crank up the machinery and get ready -- it's Rick Perry vs. Paul Ryan in 2016!!