The Political Minefield Facing Rick Perry
Texas Governor Rick Perry has been formally running for the 2012 Presidential nomination for less than a month and he has already made a huge splash. But will he also soon spark a big explosion – like one going off in a political minefield, or the sound of a mob of screaming, torch-wielding GOP establishment types seeking to end the threat of what they consider a political monster roaming their electoral countryside?
To supporters, Perry is the new Ronald Reagan. To critics, he’s a SNL caricature of Josh Brolin caricaturing George Bush in Oliver Stone’s “W.” To Democratic liberals and some moderate Republicans, he’s a dangerous rightist who could ooze his way into the Oval Office, further empower the religious right, and make Ronald Reagan look like Dennis Kucinich. To some conservatives, he’s squishy on illegal immigration.
Attention Rick Perry: You are walking in a minefield. Mobs are on your trail — coming from your left, center and right. And the Bush-family-allied political mad scientist who “created” you reportedly has regrets and wants to short-circuit you.
The Huffington Post’s Howard Fineman believes Perry worries Republican political maven Karl Rove: “The Perry-Rove story is shaping up as the ultimate tale of dangerously unintended consequences, with Rove in the role of Dr. Frankenstein and Perry as his living, rampaging political creation.”
In the classic movie, the Frankenstein monster threw a little girl in the lake. Rove is worried Perry will throw his party’s increasing chances to win the Senate and the White House in the 2012 political lake.
The Big Gulp now only isn’t at 7 Eleven it’s the sound of worried establishment GOPers.
In his opening weeks, Perry stumbled more than Wayne Newton on “Dancing with the Stars.”
Perry’s comments that he didn’t believe climate change science and doubted evolution threatened to scare independent voters. He said it would be “treasonous” if Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke printed more money – causing former George H. W. Bush administration Treasury official Bruce Bartlett to call him an “idiot” and former Nixon-Ford speechwriter Ben Stein to say: “ I hope he’ll get some moderation in his speech – and some lessons in economics … and soon.”
A Texas Ron Paul supporter ran a full page ad in a newspaper asking “Have You Ever Had Sex with Rick Perry?” trying to get evidence that Perry is a hypocrite. It’ll likely create sympathy for him.
On the other hand, if the ad is answered by a sheep, porcupine or pair of women’s’ high heel shoes, he might have campaign problems.
Can Perry win?