Rick Perry, sporting new geek glasses, gray-haired temples and phrases like “good, thoughtful conversation with the American people” and “Let’s talk about what’s best for America… This is about 50 states” visited Your World yesterday looking very much like a 2016 presidential candidate. Not surprisingly, host Neil Cavuto and Fox News producers were at the ready for a little Republican rehab to banish thoughts of “Oops” or mistaking Louisiana for Florida or how Perry’s radical anti-abortion agenda has negatively impacted women’s health in Texas.
After a series of banners on the screen made such announcements as, “Texas is home to over 50 Fortune 400 corporate headquarters” and “As of Sept 17, Gov. Perry had visited at last 5 states to encourage businesses to move to Texas,” Cavuto seemed ready to push Perry into the 2016 race.
The discussion was ostensibly about Perry’s attempt to lure Maryland businesses to Texas. But Cavuto seemed especially interested in 2016. He asked Perry, “All of this comes at a time when you’ve already indicated you don’t want to run for re-election. You’re the longest-serving Governor of either party in the country, and many are looking at this and this jobs push as something that could be a very sort of a credible wind at your back should you choose to run for President. Are you going to run for President?”
Perry answered with predictable self-deprecation that also sounded a lot like a national candidate: “Well I hope it’s a wind at the back for this country as we have a discussion. I hope that we have a conversation about what’s the best national policies for America. I do believe that it’s really pretty simple if we had the leadership in this country, put a flat tax into place, open that XL Pipeline out of Canada and create all of these energy jobs in America.”
No such modesty needed for Cavuto, though! He gushed, “You had a job growth record, and (2016 hopeful) Chris Christie …doesn’t have nearly that track record, nearly that job gain. You could make a credible alternative. Have you thought of it?”
Perry said, “I don’t make any argument other than I think it makes sense to have a chief executive officer leading this country. The current President didn’t have any CEO experience.” Neither does Perry, but Cavuto didn't embarrass him with that pesky point.
Instead, Cavuto again pushed a Perry run. “So you think you would be, you would be eminently qualified to run for President? You can’t tell me you haven’t thought about it?” he asked.
Perry answered, “Well certainly I’ve thought about it. It’s an option, and in a year or so, we’ll make that decision, but over the next 15-18 months, I’m going to be pushing this conversation across America that we have 50 laboratories of innovation. Don’t you think it makes sense that those states compete against each other? And it’s not a zero sum game.”
Cavuto later asked why Perry went into states with Democratic Governors. “It seems calculated, and I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with that, to sort of rally Republicans around this.”
“It’s an old adage you fish where the fish are, and the easier pickings are the blue states right now,” Perry said.
While Cavuto may think of Perry as a very “credible alternative” to Chris Christie, so far, the polling shows otherwise. That, of course, was another fact left out of the discussion.
Well, the last president with CEO experience just happened to be the current President’s predecessor (George Dumbya Bush.)
Fat lot of good it did him — or the country . . .
Yeah, I can see how the GOP would support that.
The ending result would be like being a cheerleader for this year’s Jacksonville Jaguars.
Yeah, Neil. That’s because Texas currently doesn’t have any sort of built-in term limits for its Governor. Almost every other state limits its Governor from serving more than 2 terms or from serving consecutive terms.
Cavuto suck-up point: “You had a job growth record,"
Yeah, Neil. Now go look at the average annual salary of all those jobs. From what I’ve read about the “Texas Job Miracle,” more than half of those jobs were MINIMUM-WAGE PAYING JOBS. And, of those that paid more, the overwhelming majority pay less than $12/hour. Plus, almost all those jobs come without benefits.
Now for some Perry corrections:
“put a flat tax into place, open that XL Pipeline out of Canada and create all of these energy jobs in America.”
Okay, Ricky. Care to tell us which departments get cut after that “flat tax” goes into place? You couldn’t even remember which three departments YOU wanted to abolish during your last run for the GOP nomination. With a flat tax, you’re going to have to abolish a whole lot more than just three. But which ones get spared? And as to the “all of these energy jobs” point, just how many “energy jobs” are we talking? I haven’t heard any number that would really make the pipeline worthwhile. The “hundreds of thousands” that I’ve heard bandied about are mostly SHORT-TERM jobs (the construction and related jobs that, once the pipeline is built, all go away). I’ve heard that (should the pipeline be built) the TOTAL number of jobs provided will be far less than 50,000. And how many states does the pipeline pass through? 50,000 more-or-less permanent jobs spread over 6, 8, a dozen states? Yep. That’s going to drive down the unemployment rate.
“but over the next 15-18 months, I’m going to be pushing this conversation across America that we have 50 laboratories of innovation. Don’t you think it makes sense that those states compete against each other? And it’s not a zero sum game.”
Excuse me? We need a little more detail about the “50 laboratories of innovation.” States ALREADY compete against each other luring businesses. Isn’t that part of the reason you tout the low/no taxes to businesses when some company’s thinking about setting up shop in your state? Isn’t that why states offer tax incentives and tax breaks to filmmakers who film “Hollywood” movies in their states? Isn’t that why car manufacturers are told “We’ll pay to build your plant for you and you won’t have to pay any utility or property taxes for the next 20 years” by state economic boards looking to lure in the companies? And yes, Rick. It IS a “zero-sum game.” When a car manufacturer (for instance) announces it’s looking to open ONE new plant that will hire 500 people and it’s scouting the country, you have 50 states competing for that plant. But, the manufacturer is only opening ONE plant—not 50, not 10, not 5, not even 2. Just ONE. So it gets “bids” from the states, and it announces it’s narrowed down the choices to 5 states. Those 5 states then begin competing to offer the most alluring package (note, it’s only “alluring” to the company—not what’s in the best interest of the people living in the area). And, after the final decision is made, you’re left with four states whose proposals are made public and the people get outraged that the state was willing to spend millions of dollars to get a company that was only going to hire 500 people with a $10 million annual payroll and the state and local community wouldn’t be making a penny off the company through taxes (for a couple of decades, potentially). Or, let’s put this in terms that a Southern governor of a state with many prominent college and national football teams could understand: When you have a winner and you have a loser, that’s a ZERO-SUM GAME, regardless of the final score (the score only reflects the margin of victory).