Roger L. Simon

Transparency this Time? Perry 2.0 to Announce on June 4

According to the Dallas Morning News — and based on a tweet by Perry’s wife Anita — Rick Perry will make his second run for the presidency official in Dallas on June 4.  This comes as no surprise since the longtime Texas governor has been making the rounds of primary states for months now.

As someone who knows Perry personally and likes him a lot — I’m no George Stephanopoulos and state my biases up front — I think the governor will have a tough row to hoe. That doesn’t mean he can’t do it.  He has plenty of talking points, considerable executive expertise and Texas’ superb job creation record, in his corner.  Also he’s central casting for president.  If he doesn’t win, put him in a mini-series. (Attn.: Shonda Rhimes.)

Still, he has to live down one of the bigger flubs in recent presidential debate history when he couldn’t recall the names of  the government agencies he wanted to get rid of.  It cost the then front-running Perry his position.  (He won’t come in as a front-runner this time, but an underdog in single digits in the polls.)

Actually, that miscue was a great teaching moment for all of us.  We live in an age when transparency is trumpeted everywhere, but we get almost none of it (cf. Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and the aforementioned Ungorgeous George).

The real story of Rick Perry, known to many, is that he had back surgery only weeks before that debate and was undoubtedly on pain killers.  I’m not bad on my feet, but I can’t imagine having to deal with a debate on Vicodin.  I’d be lucky to remember my own telephone number.  (In fact, I’m having a little trouble remembering it now.  Oh, well, it’s on speed dial.)

What Perry should have done is given us all a lesson in transparency — that is, he should have looked at the audience and  told the truth, that he was just coming off surgery and was on meds.  Practically everyone knows what that’s like and I bet they would have loved Perry for it — a big gun-totin’ guy like Rick admitting his humanity and frailty.  I have a suspicion Perry 2.0 will be long on transparency this time.  The country could use it.

Another thing  we could safely say of Rick Perry is that, if president, our national security would be in strong hands.  For evidence of that, in case you missed it, here’s a video of me and the late Andrew Breitbart “shooting with the Governor.”