Share & Connect
Texas Governor Rick Perry has been everywhere recently, trying to convince the Republican Party that he would make a good leader. He uses his record as the longest continuously serving current U.S. governor, in Texas as proof for his case.
Perry states that the Texas economy is better than the national economy and that he would be able to fix the recession. Texas currently has an unemployment rate of 8.2 percent, while the national unemployment rate is 9.1 percent.
Perry’s state is in the middle of the ranking, 25 states have lower unemployment rates than Texas and 25 other states and Washington D.C. have higher unemployment rates. Between June 2009 and August 2011, 237,000 jobs were created in Texas but most of these jobs were in the government.
Although Texas is better than the national average in unemployment, the type of employment offered in Texas is poor. Texas has the highest percentage of workers paid at or below minimum wage at 9.54 percent. Texas ranks near the bottom of the union for healthcare. Twenty-two percent of children in Texas are without health care and 26 percent of all residents are uninsured. The national average is 17 percent.
Despite all of Perry’s outrageous comments and the poor ranking in his state, his limited plans for actual policy are a bit scary. In his book, “Fed Up!”, Perry suggested dismantling social security, calling it a ponzi scheme.
He thinks the federal government should not run Medicare and allow each state to decide if they want to have insurance for senior citizens or not.
Perry has suggested that the 16th amendment be repealed which would no longer require Americans to pay income tax. Eighty percent of the government revenues comes from income taxes so without the 16th amendment, it is unclear how Perry would pay for things like the
infrastructure, military or even the salaries of his employees.
In his book, he also criticized the 17th amendment which allows for the direct election of U.S. Senators. His contradiction goes even farther when you investigate social issues. After New York legalized same-sex marriages, Perry said it was fine for New York because it should be up to each state.
However, he supports a federal marriage amendment which would outlaw same-sex marriages. So much for state’s rights and limited government. He is pro-life and, under his watch, Texas has made abortions harder for women to obtain.
He signed the Prenatal Protection Act in 2003 which defines a fetus as “human life.” He has limited late-term abortions and requires parental consent for minors to get an abortion. Just this May, Perry signed into law legislation requiring women to have a sonogram and hear the heartbeat before every abortion.
There are more Rick Perry social issues to examine. We will return to this matter another day. I am sure, in the meantime, he will keep us busy threatening government officials.
Image Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/christopherleonard/