Tag Archives: 2016 election

No goodbye for Goodhair

Come on, y’all. You didn’t really think Gov. Rick Perry was going to say “farewell” at the Texas Republican Party convention in Fort Worth, did you?

Oh, no. The man dubbed by the late columnist/humorist Molly Ivins as Gov. Goodhair said, according to the Texas Tribune, said, in effect, “See y’all later.”

You know what that means. He wants to run for president of the United States in two years.


Great! Just great!

Perry did a thorough job of embarrassing himself and the state he governs in 2011 while running briefly for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination. He didn’t make it to the first contest, the Iowa caucus, before dropping out. He had that infamous “oops” moment when he couldn’t identify all the federal agencies he’d cut if he were elected president.

He performed badly in other GOP joint appearances with the other candidates.

Perry called it off, came back to Texas and resumed his day job, which he’s held longer than anyone else in Texas history.

He’s sought to rehabilitate himself, his image, his message, his demeanor … the whole thing.

Many Texans still know him — fondly and not-so-fondly — as Gov. Goodhair, thanks to Miss Molly’s timeless description.

I’ll just add this little anecdote, which I heard countless times from quite a few Texas Panhandle Republicans as Goodhair ran for president two years ago.

A lot of ’em told me they wanted Perry elected president — just so they could get him out of Texas.

Health always an issue for national candidates

Rich Lowry is a smart young man.

His essay, published on Politico.com, states clearly an obvious truth about the upcoming presidential campaign. It is that Hillary Clinton’s health will be an issue.

I get that. Indeed, Americans always should have assurances that the commander in chief will be in tip-top shape when he or she takes the reins of government.


Lowry, smart conservative that he is, defends fellow Republican Karl Rove’s assertion that Clinton might have serious “brain injury” stemming from a fall she suffered in 2012. That’s where I part company with Lowry.

To his fundamental point about the health of candidates, let’s flash back a few election cycles.

Wasn’t Ronald Reagan’s health an issue when he ran for election the first time in 1980? He was nearly 70. When he ran for re-election in 1984, he stumbled badly in his first debate with Democratic nominee Walter Mondale, fueling open discussion that he had “lost it.” President Reagan quelled that talk immediately at the next debate when he said he “would not make my opponent’s age an issue by exploiting his youth and inexperience.”

Sen. John McCain faced similar questions about his health when he ran against Sen. Barack Obama in 2008. Let’s remember that there was some ghastly whispering going on about whether he suffered too much emotional trauma as a Vietnam War prisoner for more than five years. Plus, he had been treated for cancer. His health became an issue.

Hillary Clinton will be roughly the same age as Reagan and McCain when they ran for president. Let’s keep these health issues in their proper perspective. Igniting mean-spirited gossip about potential “brain injury” isn’t the way to examine an important issue.

Rick Perry needs a makeover

Politico.com reports that Texas Gov. Rick Perry has embarked on an extreme makeover to make erase memories of a disastrous — and short-lived — run for the presidency last time around.

He’ll need it, badly.


Perry reportedly is more relaxed and confident sounding these days, Politico reports. That’s as it should be, given that he’s a lame-duck governor. He’s held the office seemingly since The Flood and is now heading for some other mission in life.

He wants to be president, or vice president perhaps.

My own feeling is that he’s got a long way to go before he achieves either office.

A friend of mine — a former Republican state legislator who is no friend or fan of Perry — thinks the governor actually wants a No. 2 spot on the next GOP presidential ticket. He believes Perry knows his brand as a Republican presidential nominee has been damaged beyond repair, so he’s willing to settle for running as the GOP veep nominee in 2016.

“Where I have noticed it profoundly is in the last few weeks, the national TV appearances, whether he’s been on a number of Fox shows or Jimmy Kimmel and some of the others, he just seems like a very confident, upbeat and articulate spokesman for conservative policy and values,” former Perry aide Ray Sullivan told Politico.

Perry’s brand is well-established in his home state of Texas, where his unique brand of good-ol’-boy conservatism plays well. It hasn’t yet taken hold in the rest of the country, let alone in the rest of the Republican Party, which is full of tea-party conservatives who so far have done a better job of selling themselves to a willing party base.

Let us not forget that those infamous pre-2012 GOP primary gaffes — namely the “oops” blunder in which he couldn’t name the third agency he would dismantle were he elected president — will be on the record … forever.

Good luck with your makeover, governor. You’ll need to be unrecognizable from what you’ve shown us so far.