Scroll down to the bottom of the page for links to Rick Perry’s websites, financial filings, positions papers, speeches , YouTube Channel and contact information
Texas Governor Rick Perry
Born: March 4,1950 (age 61), Paint Creek, Texas
Spouse(s): Anita Thigpen
Children : Griffin, Sydney
Residence : Texas Governor’s Mansion
Alma mater: Texas A&M University
Political Career :
- 1984-1990: Member of the Texas House of Representatives Texas
- 1990-1998:Perry challenged incumbent Democratic Agriculture Commissioner Jim Hightower. Perry narrowly unseated Hightower, even as the Republican gubernatorial candidate, Clayton Williams, went down to defeat at the hands of Ann Richards.
- In 1998-2000:Lieutenat Governor of Texas
- 2000-Present: In 2000, Perry assumed the office of Governor after then Governor George W. Bush resigned to assume the office of President of the United States
Click on each topic to view Perrys position
James Richard Perry was born North of Abilene in Paint Creek, Texas. As a young boy he became a Boy Scout and attained the rank of Eagle Scout. He has since written a book on scouting called “On My Honor: Why the American Values of the Boy Scouts Are Worth Fighting for” and earned The Boy Scouts of America Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.
After high school, Rick went to Texas A & M where he received a degree in animal science. From there he joined the Air Force where he served from 1972 to 1977 He became a pilot and flying C-130 tactical airlift aircraft in the Europe and the Middle East and attained the rank of Captain.
Upon leaving the service in 1978, Rick Perry was elected to the Texas State Board of Education as a Democrat. Then in 1985 he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives. In 1989 he switched Parties and became a Republican. By the time 1991 rolled around, Perry left the Texas House of Representatives to become the states Agriculture Commissioner, a position he occupied until 1999 when he took office as Governor George W. Bushs Lieutenant Governor. The following year, after Governor Bush resigned to become President, Rick Perry was sworn in as the states 47th Governor. In 2002 he was elected Governor and then again in 2006 and 2010. These reelection victories earned Perry the distinction as the only person to ever be elected to serve three terms as the Governor of Texas. George W. Bush was the first person to ever win two terms as Governor of the state.
Upon first assuming office in 2000, Governor Perry proved to be a determined leader who took firm stands and had a tin ear for his critics. By 2001, only a year after taking office, Governor Perry vetoed legislation a total of 82 times, more than any previous governor since the reconstruction.
Over his more than ten years as governor, Perry has racked up an impressive record, especially when it comes to some of the hot button issues facing the nation. On the issue of border security, Gov. Perry pursued an aggressive border security strategy and significantly increased the resources necessary to insure that Texas peace officers can protect Texans from the epidemic level of drug-related violence that is permeating our Southern border.
On the issue of taxes and spending, when Texas faced a record $10 billion budget shortfall in 2003, instead of raising taxes he became the first Texas governor since World War II to sign a budget that lowered state spending . Perry has also used his line item veto to cut over $3 billion in proposed spending.
On the important issue of tort reform, he orchestrated the passage of the countrys most sweeping lawsuit reforms and closed the door on junk lawsuits. And on the issue of healthcare reform, since Texas voters approved Perrys tort reforms, malpractice claims and premiums have fallen and access to healthcare is increasing across the state as doctors have applied in droves to practice in Texas.
To prepare young Texans to for the future, Gov. Perry has led the fight for better schools, including a $2,000 teacher pay raise, a return to basic subjects like math, history and science, and ways to measure student success. He has consistently worked for higher standards and greater accountability. He ordered schools to spend 65% of tax dollars directly in the classroomnot bureaucracyand required districts to open their financial books so taxpayers can see how their money is being spent. Texas now has the countrys largest teacher performance pay program and has been recognized as a leader in preparing students to graduate high school college- or career-ready. Today student test scores are rising, and a record number of young Texans are going to college.
When it comes to education, under Rick Perrys leadership teachers received a $2,000 pay raise and he has consistently worked for higher standards and greater accountability. He ordered schools to spend 65% of tax dollars directly in the classroomnot bureaucracyand required districts to open their financial books so taxpayers can see how their money is being spent. Texas now has the countrys largest teacher performance pay program and has been recognized as a leader in preparing students to graduate high school college- or career-ready.
But out of a long list of accomplishments including those and more, one that could have the most impact in a national election, under the current environment, is Perrys record on jobs and the economy. It is a record that speaks for itself and serves as a model that most other states have been only able to envy. Perrys tough fiscal discipline, sensible and predictable regulations, fair legal system and increasingly accountable schools, has led the nation in job creation with more jobs gained than any other state in 2010 and over the past ten years. As a result, Texas is consistently ranked as the nations best place to do business and create jobs.
On social issues, Governor Perry adamantly defines marriage as only between a man and a woman and openly opposes to gay marriage. He has signed a bill limiting late term abortions that requires girls under 18 to get parental consent to get an abortion. And proving that his record is not blemish and controversial free, in 2007 he issued an executive order requiring that all girls in Texas get an expensive Human papillomavirus vaccine before they could enter the sixth grade. When Governor Perry issued this order Gardasil by the drug company Merck was the only such vaccine that had been approved by the Federal Drug Administration and it usually ran over $350.00 per vaccine. This action drew national press pointing out a $6000.00 contribution by the drug company to Perry’s campaign fund. Within a few weeks concerned families sued to block the order. The Executive order was undone a few months later.
Other positions that often draw fire to Governor Perry is his support for the subjects of creationism and intelligent design being taught in Texas Schools despite it being rejected by a federal judge an his rejection of global warming.
Rick Perry has previously stated, many times over, that he is not running for President. However in mid-January of 2011, it was reported that he had begun polling voters outside of Texas. This move can only be viewed as one that indicates he is considering the possibility of running.
Under the circumstances, it seems only natural for him to think about it. Early on, while people like Mitt Romney have an organizational edge in the race for the Republican presidential nomination and others like Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin have some strong support, Romney has never been quite able to solidify himself as a clear frontrunner and Huckabee and Palin are not yet definitely running. Other names like Mitch Daniels and Haley Barbour are also not sure to run and aside from those names, other contenders have a long way to go before they can be perceived as top tier candidates. This means that the Republican field is still wide open.
As such, given Perrys record and his ability to use that record to fire up the conservative base and appeal to the TEA Party movement, Rick Perry must be considered a contender for the nomination. Add to that the appeal that Perrys record on taxes, budgets, jobs and the economy and what you have is a possible Republican candidate who can be equally as attractive to the broader electorate who is concerned with growing deficits, higher taxes and over 9.0% unemployment.
If Rick Perry were to run, he would become an automatic top tier candidate. Along with a solid record of positive achievements, he has the All-American looks of the Marlboro Man and his personality is one that emanates confidence and optimism with charm and a down to earth, can-do, American spirit. This makes for a candidate who can maximize the impact of a well run campaign, and Perry has the ability to assemble a team that can run a top notch campaign. He also has the fundraising mechanism and ability to finance a top notch, well run campaign.
For Governor Perry, the Republican presidential nomination contest could be much easier for him to win than most. His biggest challenge would be beating President Obama in the general election and proving to Republicans that he can do so. Perrys conservative positions are just right for the Party establishment but can they be packaged in a way that all voters would buy? That is the test. In addition to that challenge, the Governor will have to overcome the fact that many Americans may not be quick to elect another President from Texas, so soon after George Bush. But at a time when America seems to have become a nation that is able to conquer and see through stereotypes and shallow stigmas, if Rick Perry portrays himself properly, he can easily overcome that hurdle.
For all these reasons, Rick Perry is the candidate to watch. If no one catches and fire and if someone who possesses his star qualities and has a record as solid as his, doesnt come forward in the GOP field by as late as September, look for Rick Perry to shake things up.