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The “inconsequential” candidate

It was an interesting weekend in the contest to become the Republican nominee for president. Let’s take a look at Gov. Rick Perry’s announcement speech. Should this guy even be in the race?

First, to recap: Michelle Bachman celebrated after winning the Iowa Straw Poll on Saturday, and Tim Pawlenty dropped out after a poor showing.

Meanwhile, Texas governor Perry entered the race with an announcement speech the same day. His message is almost purely about the economy: He’ll encourage job growth and cut government spending. He used some really interesting language in the conclusion to his announcement speech (emphasis mine):

And I’ll promise you this: I’ll work every day to make Washington, D.C. as inconsequential in your life as I can. And at the same time, we’ll be freeing our families and small businesses and states from the burdensome and costly federal government so those groups can create, innovate and succeed.

Perry says he wants to make Washington “inconsequential.” Nobody should believe this.

Think of great presidents and you think of men of consequence. Our best presidents use the federal government to make a difference, to help people and to defend liberty. They act with consequence in mind.

Nobody applies for a job hoping to be inconsequential. Indeed, Perry is an extremely consequential governor, having held office for more than 10 years. He’s presided over good economic indicators, slashed budgets, tried to reform state programs, and recently led a big, strange Christian prayer rally.

Perry might tell you he wants to minimize the influence of Washington—potentially, his own influence. His supporters probably love to hear that. But it’s spin at best, and a lie at worst. The way to remove your influence from people’s lives is to stay home. People who want Washington to be inconsequential do not run for president.

Photo via rickperry.org.

— By Daryl Lang. Filed under News & Journalism, Politics

One comment

  1. JWnTX says:

    Are you daft? If someone wants to free the people from onerous regulation and micromanagement, the only way to do it is from within government (other than armed insurrection). Your thought process here is really flawed. That said, I don’t consider Perry a reliable conservative who would stick to his guns. I think he’s far too political an animal for that.

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