Perry Serves Up Red Meat to Conservatives

On economic and social issues, Perry serves up the red meat and takes jabs at Romney.


Texas Gov. Rick Perry brought his red meat to the Values Voter Summit, offering up scalding rhetoric about President Obama, along with some underhand blasts at his chief rival, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Covering all of his bases, Perry touched on economics, religion, immigration, national security, and familiar GOP talking points. "When Democrats say 'fair share,' you know they're being 'fast and furious' with the facts," referring to the scandalous Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms program. He said one of his priorities as president would be to "repeal the job-killing bureaucratic nightmare that is known as Obamacare." He blasted the White House for its recent jobs bill push. "It just goes to show that those blinded by tax and spend, big government ideology will never see the truth," Perry said. "Every day, it is clear thatt the United States economy, for it to grow and to succeed, we need new leadership."

[Read why the early primary hurts Perry and helps Romney.]

Trying to fight back against the image that he is soft on illegal immigration, Perry also touted his opposition to any type of "amnesty" for undocumented aliens, and said the U.S. military should consider working with the military of Mexico to crack down on criminal drug gangs. He made no mention, though, of the Texas program which let illegal immigrants receive in-state tuition at state colleges.

On social issues, Perry took a swipe at Romney. "For some candidates, 'pro-life' is an election-year strategy," Perry said, apparently referring to Romney's past positions on abortion. He got one of his biggest applause lines by bragging about a state budget which defunded Planned Parenthood in Texas.

  • Vote: Who is your pick for the GOP nomination?
  • See photos of the GOP candidates on the campaign trail.
  • See cartoons about the Republican hopefuls.