Former Texas governor and Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry called Donald Trump’s campaign for the Republican nomination a “cancer on conservatism” that would ultimately destroy the “cause of conservatism” if it is ignored.
Trump recently posted a photo on Facebook with Perry, which was taken in Trump’s office. The caption read, “Rick Perry in my office last cycle playing nice and begging for my support and money. Hypocrite!”
PJ Media asked Perry about the photo. “I have no response to that,” Perry said.
The common theme of Perry’s speech at the Opportunity and Freedom PAC forum in Washington was Trump’s candidacy.
“Let no one be mistaken – Donald Trump’s candidacy is a cancer on conservatism, and it must be clearly diagnosed, excised and discarded. It cannot be pacified or ignored, for it will destroy a set of principles that has lifted more people out of poverty than any force in the history of the civilized world – the cause of conservatism,” Perry, who also ran for president in 2012, said.
“The era of the liberal nanny state must end but it cannot be replaced by reactionary politics founded on division. We will be no better off with a Republican divider in the White House than the current Democrat divider in the White House. Donald Trump the reality television star is a great generator of ratings but Donald Trump the candidate is a sower of division, wrongly demonizing Mexican-Americans for political sport,” he added.
To support his point, Perry referenced the 1840s and compared Trump to the “Know Nothings” who he said attributed “the problems of the nation” to Irish and German immigrants.
“They were obsessively anti-Catholic, so much so that when the Pope sent marble for the building of the Washington Monument, they smashed it to pieces and helped delay its construction for 35 years,” he said.
“These people built nothing, created nothing. They existed to cast blame and tear down certain institutions and to give outlet to anger. Donald Trump is the modern-day incarnation of the Know-Nothing movement.”
Trump has announced plans for a press conference at the border in Laredo, Texas, on Thursday.
“I hope he can find the border because I’m not sure he’s ever been there before,” Perry said. “But in all seriousness, he owes an apology to the men and women of the Texas National Guard. I think he owes an apology to Texas Ranger Recon teams.”
Perry advised Trump to recognize that it is not any state’s responsibility to secure the border.
“That is the federal government’s responsibility,” Perry said. “If he wants to spew invectives, I would suggest rather than the state of Texas and the leadership of the state of Texas and in turn the men and women who put their lives on the line on that border to help secure it, he should point that to the federal government that has failed and failed to secure that border.”
As Trump continues to rise in the polls, Perry recommended Republicans “beware of false prophets” and “not let itching ears be tickled by messengers who appeal to anger, division and resentment.”
“Resentment is the poison we swallow that we hope harms another. My fellow Republicans, don’t take the poison,” he said.