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Texas governor Rick Perry has a target on his back. Rep. Michele Bachmann’s super PAC- Keep Conservatives United, released a 30 second ad earlier in the week said that Perry took spending from $45 billion to $90.4 billion between 2000 and 2010.
“Rick Perry doubled spending in a decade,” says the ad. “And he’s supposed to be the Tea Party guy?” The ad will begin airing Monday in South Carolina.
Perry’s spokesman Ray Sullivan called the ad “patently and provably false,” and cited numbers showing that spending in the state budget that is paid for with state taxes and other state revenues has gone down since Perry took office, if the figures are adjusted for population and inflation. Perry’s campaign explained that general revenue spending was $55.7 billion for the 2000-2001 budget and is $80.5 billion for 2012-2013.
Keep Conservatives United PAC obtained their numbers from a Texas State Comptroller’s report issued one year ago. Perry’s campaign took its numbers from the state legislature’s budget board report in May.
Bachmann is not the only candidate that has begun attacking Perry. Mitt Romney criticized “career politicians” earlier in the week, a clear dig at Perry who has held an elected position since 1984. Fellow Texan Ron Paul also had some sharp words for Perry during an interview on Friday. The Republican congressman was on a stop in New Hampshire when he called Perry the “candidate of the week.”
“He was the one saying, ‘Oh yeah, I’m all for secession,’ and that kind of talk,” Paul told The Associated Press. “The only thing I would advise is looking into him, looking at his record, and not just taking him at face value. Texas has had a lot of changes in these last eight years, not exactly positive either.”
In a 2009 interview, Perry said there was no reason for Texas to secede from the union, but suggested it was a possibility if Washington political leaders continued to “thumb their nose at the American people.”
Paul suggested he was not worried about Perry’s rapid rise. “There are a lot of candidates who climbed real fast and went down real fast,” Paul said. All this is building up to the GOP’s next debate. Next Wednesday will be the first debate since Perry has joined the republican candidates.