After Rick Perry announced that he is officially running for president, Team Obama put out a statement that slew Perry’s claims of a Texas Miracle, and tied him to the unpopular congressional Republicans.
During his announcement Perry said,
Listen, we just got to get back to the basic truths of economic success. As Governor, I’ve had to deal with the consequences of this national recession. In 2003, and again this year, my state faced billions of dollars in budget shortfalls. But we worked hard, we made tough decisions, we balanced our budget. Not by raising taxes, but by setting priorities and cutting government spending. It can and it must be done in Washington, DC.
Dr. Schwertner (State Representative, R-Williamson County, TX), we have led Texas based on some just really pretty simple guiding principles. One is don’t spend all of the money. Two is keeping the taxes low and under control. Three is you have your regulatory climate fair and predictable. Four is reform the legal system so frivolous lawsuits don’t paralyze employers that are trying to create jobs.
Over the years, we have followed this recipe to produce the strongest economy in the nation. Since June of 2009, Texas is responsible for more than 40 percent of all of the new jobs created in America. Now think about that. We’re home to less than 10 percent of the population in America, but forty percent of all the new jobs were created in that state. I’ve cut taxes. I have delivered historic property tax reductions. I was the first governor since World War II to cut general revenue spending in our state budget. We passed lawsuit reform, including just this last session a “loser pays” law to stop the frivolous lawsuits that were happening.
Obama For America hit back hard against Perry’s claims,
Governor Perry’s economic policies are a carbon copy of the economic policies of Washington Republicans. He pledged to support the cut cap and balance plan that would preserve subsidies for oil and gas companies and tax cuts for the wealthiest while ending Medicare as we know it, eroding Social Security, eliminating hundreds of thousands of jobs and erasing investments in education and research and development. That’s the same approach he took in Texas, where middle class families know his economic record is no miracle – it’s a tall tale. Governor Perry allowed special interests to write their own rules, hired corporate lobbyists to oversee corporations, and cut funding for programs that would create opportunity for middle class families. In a Republican field that has already pledged allegiance to the Tea Party and failed to present any plan that will benefit the middle class or create the jobs America needs to win the future, Governor Perry offers more of the same.
That was pretty brutal, and a little bit of fact checking reveals that it is all true.
Paul Krugman has written about the myth of Rick Perry’s Texas miracle. Krugman noted that Perry’s policies have left the state facing a $25 billion shortfall in each of the next two years, and that Texas’ fast booming economy is more due to high oil prices than any sort of conservative ideology tax cut miracle. Texas ranks 49th out of 50 states in per capita tax burden. The problem the state faces is that there is no more room to cut taxes, so the only option left is to gut the few social services that remain.
When Obama For America called Perry a carbon copy of Washington Republicans, they were not kidding. Perry advocates the exact same policies that almost took the nation into default, and caused our debt to be downgraded. Under Rick Perry, Texas covers the smallest percentage of unemployed workers in the country. Perry has carried out a full assault on education and the middle class. Just for good measure, Perry has also met with the Koch Brothers and taken their money too.
Gov. Perry is also the same politician who once spoke of secession, but then quietly turned around and begged the Obama administration for stimulus money. Perry’s Texas miracle required some government funds so that the state could pay unemployment benefits.
Team Obama has not been giving Bachmann, Romney, and now Perry a free pass. They have been very aggressive in countering the attacks on the president from each of these candidates. Obama For America is sending the message that they aren’t about to sit on the sidelines and wait until the fall of 2012 to get involved.
If I was to take a wild guess, I’d bet that the Obama campaign would love to face Perry next fall. The similarities between Perry and George W. Bush would be like shooting fish in a barrel. Since Perry holds almost all of the same positions as the Congressional Republicans, it would be easy for Obama to run against him and the Washington GOP at the same time.
Rick Perry’s announcement read like a Fox News script, and Team Obama wasted no time doing a straight talk rewrite.