Des Moines, Iowa (CNN) - Texas Gov. Rick Perry dismissed comparisons between himself and former president George W. Bush on Monday, calling them "inevitable" but unfair.
"I am Rick Perry and he is George Bush," Perry declared as he marched through the Iowa State Fair, surrounded by reporters. "And our records are quite different."
Asked what the biggest difference is, Perry responded: "I went to Texas A&M. He went to Yale."
He did not answer when pressed to name a policy difference.
Perry, who took office in Austin after Bush captured the White House in 2000, seemed to bristle at the suggestion, which is certain to haunt him during his campaign.
Some Republicans are queasy about the prospect of the party putting another swaggering Texan at the top of the ticket in 2012, especially with recent polls showing that Bush still shoulders most of the blame for the sagging economy.
"George Bush is not my opponent," he told reporters. "He a former president and we give him all the respect for that, but we are talking about how you create jobs."
Perry is in the midst of his first trip to Iowa as a presidential hopeful, and on Monday he showed off the retails skills that made him such a formidable candidate back home in Texas.
Back-slapping and cheek-pinching his way through the fair, Perry displayed a common touch, posing for photos with toddlers and talking ranching with passers-by.
When offered to taste a sizeable pork tenderloin, he ate the whole thing.
"Pork, the other white meat," he said, before tearing into the slab of meat. "We won't have to worry about dinner tonight, and there will be a good little bit of exercise, too."
He made a point of shaking hands with military veterans and their families and rarely missed a chance to remind voters that he served as a captain in the Air Force.
Perry said that if elected, members of the United States Armed Forces would respect him more than President Barack Obama or any of his Republican rivals who have not served in the military.
"I think they would really like to see a person who wore a uniform in that office and I think that's just a true statement," he said. "I wouldn't back up off it an inch. Go ask your veterans if they would rather see somebody who has never served as Commander-in-Chief."
He added, "Experience matters, having walked in a person's shoes, having done what these young men and women in the military are doing matters to them. I don't want somebody sitting in the front left seat of that airliner who just got their pilot's license."
Goood man, trustable even if you don't like his ideas. Obama...like a used car salesman ( need I say more)
Perry will be our next President, he will have to fix the mess Obama has gotten us in.
Daggummit Slick Rick, you too are a corporatist with contempt for the middle class - just like Dubya
At least a minimum wage job is a job! In the old days people worked 2 minimum wage jobs. People have to get off their ass & stop making excuses. I work 80 hours a week. Stop crying & do something, This is America, people & children are starving to death in Africa while some of our people are lazy. Sorry, the truth hurts!!!! & yes Mormans are true Bigots, In 1979 they were forced to open up the priesthood to blacks cause their tax exempt status was going to be taken away if not. Absolutely 100% true, These guys in Salt Lake are truely Bigots towards blacks!!!!!
Hey, even VETS can't use their VA IDs to vote in TX!! LOL. Perry....just another joke!
Let me think this out. I served 4 years in the air force, never saw combat and was an E-4 when I got out. So that makes me more qualified than someone who did not serve? I think it depends on what you did while you served. Just because you are a pilot does not qualify you to run our country.Many of our past presidents never served in the military and had great respect.
Oh goody-goody...the GOP's latest "golden boy" attempt to try and snag the Whitehouse in 2012...gee fellas...you guys are getin' kinda desperate here and showing your hand (as bad as it is)....from what I've seen so far....Mr. Perry and the rest of those nuts trying to become the GOP nominee definately aren't ready to go up against President Obama...crappy economy or not...let's see how long Mr. Perry will ride this wave before he's found out and crashes ...(I get the feeling it won't be that long)
If he gets elected president McDonalds will be hiring!!!!!
Perry is going home in 2012. The man is a fraud like the rest of the republican field.
The man got a C in US history and a D in economics at Texas A&M. I seem to recall someone else being a C/D student as well...hmmmm....
You seem to have a short memory. This "mess" began in 2007- 2008 when another beloved Texan was in the White House. For your edification, Mr. Obama came into office in Jan. 2009. He is still cleaning up the tons of dung left by "W" and
it will take even longer to get our economy back on track. Deal with it. The idea that Mr. minimum wage job creator (Perry)has a magic pill is laughable, at best.
Bush is actually the smarter of the two. Scary, huh? Perry got a C in gym – who in the heck get's C's in gym????
SDDD. Same dork different decade.
Yes, Perry is no Bush. Bush, for all his faults and general economic incompetence at least seemed to have a sense of honor and the country's best interests in mind (even if execution was terrible). Perry, on the other hand, combines a general lack of economic and governmental competence with a sense of ethics that would put most used car salesmen to shame.
The real difference between the two is that Rick Perry has better hair and he's not nearly as smart.
The following is a headline seen in the last race for Texas governor.
Kay Bailey Hutchison ad pours out headlines casting Gov. Rick Perry as beholden to special interests.
Politi-fact gives her use of the headlines a rating of Mostly True.
???So does mostly true rating from polit-fact have the special interest glass half full or have empty???
A guy who tries to make it the law that all 12 year old girls take a pricey STD drug that is too new to be reliably safe? Thank God EVERYONE else in the Texas government shot that one down before anything bad happened!
I'm surprised that Perry didn't have a "Mission Accomplished" banner hanging in his background.
Let's play write a caption for these two photographs:
Perry: "I told my friends to wear the white hats instead of the hoods; thought it would be a little more prudent politically."
Bush: "How'd you get that C? You musda cheated!"
That I would agree with. The records are quite different, the positions are quite different, and the strategies are quite different.
They just both happen to be from TX.
I'm with Sniffit.
The guy got a C in US History and a D in economics. From Texas A&M !
Not Rice, not Yale, Not Havard, A&M ! Thats not bad mouthing A&M,but c'mon.
How this guy can make those grades at that school, and bad mouth theb President takes some stones.
Despite what he says, Perry is Bush 2.0 From my front row seat here in Texas, this guy is the mirror image of Bush.
Put on some jeans,fall back into a thick howdy-doody Texas drawl and put your boots put up on a bale of hay on the trail......For whatever reason, some people down here eat that stuff up.
All a perry has to do is watch and listen to Perry for a minute or two. His mannerisms,the way he talks, the way he gestures.
I've been saying for the past 5-6 years he's a Bush wannbe. Kind of like Kobe Bryant mimicks Jordan. I mean you can see it without trying with Perry and Bush.
I hope my fellow Americans are smart enough to see through the "awww shucks" put on by Rick Perry.
Not unfair or irrelevant when as recently as last week you were calling Shrub a great president.
This is crap! The GOP better give me some better alternative than four more years of George W. Bush or I'll vote for four more years of Obama.
Easy to tell from all the nasty comments, the Obama supporters are very worried, Perry's gonna kick Obama's behind back to Chicago.