With the recent self-implosions of the top two Republican horses, there has been much speculation as to who will take the coveted spot on PD as the GOP front runner for the 2012 race. A few names have been tossed into the ring, but there is one that gives me great pause (nausea to be more specific) is Rick Perry.

I know what you’re thinking… Alaina, you’re a Texan, he’s the Governor of Texas, you’re a Conservative, he’s a Conservative, you hate Obama, he hates Obama… All should be peachy, right? Not so much. Rick Perry claims to be a Conservative, but I’ve always been one to believe that actions speak louder than words.

Texas made national headlines when Perry established an Executive Order to mandate girls to take Gardasil, a HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine, that was later defeated by the Texas Legislature. Personally, I’m a fan of vaccines. However, as a Conservative I believe in small government and the right of the parents to choose whether or not their child is vaccinated. It should also be noted that financial ties between Perry and Merck, the maker of Gardasil, were uncovered. Perry denies that Merck’s contributions had an impact on his decision, but it still sounds a little shady.

Perry tried to convince our legislature to use a portion of our Teachers’ Retirement Fund to finance start-up businesses. I always applaud efforts to support economic growth, but start-ups are risky. That failed, so then he tried to convince our legislature to use the funds to build more toll roads, which he’s now trying to sell to foreign toll operators (more on that later). Thank goodness that failed too. Fund Managers generally try to invest in assets that they think will have the greatest amount of return and call me crazy, but I don’t think start-ups and toll roads quite qualify.

Texas has one of the most well run lotteries in the country, however, Rick Perry wanted to sell (and then later discussed leasing) our lottery to the private sector. Perry said he believed the private sector could run the lottery better than the Texas Lottery Commission could and we would use the $14 billion from the sale to fund cancer research, education, and healthcare. It sounds good in theory, but no one has ever been able to make his office’s numbers work out quite right.

Perry’s latest push has been to sell Texas highways to foreign toll operators. I can’t comment on this one because I can’t even begin to understand why anyone would think this would be a good idea.

Have you noticed the pattern here? Perry always seems to want to sell off our assets to the private sector. It would make sense if we were bleeding cash and needed to raise money quickly, but Texas has one of the best economies in the country and has for many years. The bottom line is that Perry is a shady character and seems to care more about his own personal interests and pocketbook than his state.

Comments