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‘The New Yorker’ Weighs In on Rick Perry’s Presidential Aspirations

The New Yorker

In the upcoming August 29th issue of The New Yorker, Lawrence Wright recounts Texas Governor Rick Perry’s journey from Lieutenant Governor to presidential contender.

Wright lives in Austin, is a former writer for Texas Monthly and has been with The New Yorker since 1992. It’s this eclectic mix of experiences that help form his view on Perry as his commentary is titled ‘A Different Kind of Texan’.

Wright admits that he underestimated Rick Perry politically, and cites his strength in elections, but still takes some digs at Perry’s views calling them ‘extreme’.

He is among the toughest campaigners the state has ever seen. He specializes in stirring extremist passions, which helps him in primaries. Several times, he has aired the possibility that Texas might secede from the Union, claiming that the state can do so under the annexation agreement of 1845. Every Texas schoolchild knows that this is inaccurate: Texas has the right only to split itself into five states. In any case, it’s an odd position for a Presidential candidate.

Wright also takes time to distinguish Rick Perry from George W. Bush. As we heard on some of KYYW’s national talk shows, like Rush Limbaugh, there are many out there that perceive Perry to be a clone of George W.

Non-Texans are bound to look at Perry and see a reprise of Bush’s swagger and twang. In Texas, however, the two men are seen as very different. Bush has money, a famous name, and two Ivy League degrees. Perry has none of those assets. Bush was a businessman; Perry was a cotton farmer. When Bush was governor, Democrats were still a factor in Texas politics, and he was notably bipartisan; under Perry, the two relevant parties are the Republican Party and the Tea Party. He leans toward the radicals.

As Robert Pratt would say, there is a ‘back of the hand’ feeling toward Perry as you read Wright’s commentary. I think is the perfect example of the uphill battle Perry will face in the North as he runs for the 2012 GOP nomination.

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