The spin on the Perry-Romney crossfire
October 18th, 2011
10:49 PM ET
3 years ago

The spin on the Perry-Romney crossfire

Las Vegas, Nevada (CNN) - So who won the war of words between Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney over illegal immigration, jobs and health care?

It depends on whom you ask.

Top advisers from both campaigns made their case post-debate in the Spin Room.

"I think Rick Perry had a strategy coming into this debate to kill Mitt, and he ended up killing himself. I say that based that on the audience reaction," said top Romney adviser Eric Fehrnstrom.

"I think what they saw in Rick Perry was very desperate candidate, someone who revived a candidacy that is sinking beneath the waves. So he came armed with negative attacks and personal cheap shots that were booed by the audience at every turn," added Fehrnstorm.

But Ray Sullivan, Perry's communications director, said the Texas governor wasn't too aggressive in his attacks against Romney, adding that "I think the governor spoke from the heart."

"These debates are set up to be lively. This was a lively one. The governor is passionate about his record and passionate about calling folks every now and then on their records," added Sullivan.

Asked if Perry was presidential in his approach at the debate, Sullivan said "I think he was Rick Perry in his approach and that's a good thing for us."


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Rick Perry
soundoff (258 Responses)
  1. vic , nashville ,tn

    It was great debate, Romney Vs Perry video clip hot topic in all the morning show and local news.
    After the debate most people here supporting Herman Cain he was cool , the way he handle the 999 was cool

    October 19, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  2. abby1

    None of them demonstrated presidential or leadership qualities. I compare this debate to watching one of those tacky "reality" shows like Jersey Shore, Bad Girls Club, or Real Housewives of ...........

    October 19, 2011 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  3. SiriusVH

    This poor Perry fella looks more and more like a Chicago gangster from the 1930's.

    It is beginning to look more and more like this: 2012-2016: Obama, 2016-2020: Christie

    October 19, 2011 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  4. Independent Voters

    President Obama have to be laughing at the debate last nite because I fell out of my chair laughing hard at Romney and Perry going at it and Bachman kept saying Obama, Obama, Obama did that and he did this. I know the republican party is mad with these clowns. I never seen anything like this before coming from the republican party.

    Congratulation Obama/Biden 2012 you will win by landslide

    October 19, 2011 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  5. ED FL

    The American people won due to the ability of seeing what a poor choice the GOP is , no matter which won is the winner in this circus. Obama has to be wetting his pants in laughter after watching what /who his opponent will be.

    October 19, 2011 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  6. Kwesoe

    I'm frustrated by how the media has taken over the American political process. The media has crafted a process whereby we choose one of our citizens to be our leader into a total mockery. They have made it so that civilized candidates have to debate and attack each other's credibilities, all in the name of ratings. In the end, people no longer think for themselves because they have become accustomed to let the media think for them. No wonder, we elect losers and slick talkers to run our government.

    October 19, 2011 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  7. Jeffrey Root

    Perry acted like a little child last night and you could tell the audience thought so when they booed him. Santorum also looked like a little whiner. I loved watching Pauls reaction anytime he talks. He cracks me up. Cain got demolished on his 999 plan. Bachman took a back seat and gave half answers. Gingrich just spoke his mind without caring what people thought and Romney found himself defending his positions on everything. The night was a circus. I voted for Obama and I want him out now, but I won't vote for any of these clowns.

    October 19, 2011 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  8. SecedingfromTexas

    Texas law allows single family households to hire illegals as housekeepers and LAWN caretakers, without
    punishment, soooooooooooooo Rick Perry, what's the beef?
    Bigggest loser – Rick "you get to ask the questions, I get to answer however I want" Perry.
    Winner – Nobody

    October 19, 2011 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  9. DB

    Really? Is this the best that the U.S. can do in terms of candidates? Between both parties, we're insured that this nation will fail.

    October 19, 2011 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  10. Ptrika

    I didn't watch...it is so sad. I don't believe real republicans could ever want this.

    October 19, 2011 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  11. Grady

    not ready for prime time players....
    let's see, the best collective idea they could come up with as far as creating jobs is building something equal to the "Great Wall of China" along the U.S. / Mexico border. As Perry surmised...estimate around a billion dollars and a job for anyone who can use a shovel, roll a wheelbarrow, handle the heat and cold of the desert and deal with scorpions and rattle snakes.
    Their employment could last for up to fifteen years.
    I like it...the election can't come to soon

    October 19, 2011 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  12. jackthegeek

    Even the lowest pick of these candidates would beat Obama by landslide. Obama looks lame with his non-sense rhetorics compared to anyone of these candidates. Deficit rom 161 billion to 1.65 Trillion dollars, then unemployment at 9.1% . Are you kidding me??

    October 19, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  13. Tired of the nonsense

    Who was the winner of last night's debate?
    The American people.
    We were once again shown that the GOP is made up of a bunch of incompetent loons.

    Good thing Obama's running in 2012. We need to keep intelligence in the White House. We've had it since 2008, and we need it for four more years.

    Obama/Biden 2012

    October 19, 2011 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  14. Serge

    I'm a Republican and I'm getting tired of the rest of the country making fun of our candidates. These people represent us, the Republicans. Can't you understand that?!!! You shouldn't be making fun of the people we will choose from to put into the highest office in the land. Each of the Republican candidates represents a facet of the Republican belief system. Take Rick Perry, for instance. He represents the Texas form of Republicanism. We elected another guy from Texas and that didn't go too badly. I work for the defense industry and our company made a lot of money supporting Mr. Bush's wars. And I look around my neighborhood and I see a lot of other families who benefited from supporting these wars. So, yes, I would support another Texan coming into office.

    October 19, 2011 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  15. De

    All of the candidates had been throwing blows at Perry and when he FINALLY begins to learn how to fight back, the same people want to chastise him and even call him a bully--WHATEVER, blah blah blah, WAAABBB!!
    Team Perry!! Perry is a strong and competent contender– Deal with it!

    October 19, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  16. Roger

    Good grief – what a pathetic bunch of losers the Republicans are putting up. Surely out there somewhere there must be a candidate who is not nuts, who can provide a clear and concise vision with civility and intelligence to properly go up against President Obama. If this is the best there is, my vote is definitely going to President Obama.

    October 19, 2011 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  17. AlaskaPalin

    Romney=obama. We can see why conservatives will not go for romney- he is the weakest of the candidates. He flip flops on health care and the social issues. He has been in campaign mode for nearly six years; spent millions of dollars and by rights is seen as next in line yet he has not delivered a decisive knockout punch nor said anything that sticks with the voters. His economic plan comes in second to 999. He is having problems with a religious voting block. By now he should have had this thing in the bag yet with what is seen as a 'weak field' he is performing not magnificently but average. He has no charisma. Liberals are not very negative about him and this should serve as a warning to conservatives. If he is the choice obama will toast him. For socioeconomic reasons america cannot risk four more years of obama. Romney=Obama!.

    October 19, 2011 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  18. MB

    The clear winner of last night's debate was Jon Huntsman.

    October 19, 2011 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  19. Lee

    It has been said that Mitt Romney flip-flops. Rick Perry just flops.
    Romney in 2012!!

    October 19, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  20. indyreader

    Proclaiming a "winner" in this debate is like observing that Butthead is a lot smarter than Beavis. Even if the assessment is true, that medal ain't nothin' to brag about.

    October 19, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  21. petemg

    Too much finger pointing and blaming. Not enough original thinking to show people what their platforms are. Too much of I would do better than you. Sounds like a bunch of kids on the playground. And then we also hear about Huntsman throwing temper tantrum. Why wasn't Huntsman man enough to fess up that he would not have had any support like he has at home.
    This is the time for the totally lost delegates to be weeded out. Too much hanging in there and using up money. This is the time to group up and get down to reality. If they don't, Obama will be a shoe in. Just because Obama is pouting and going out campaigning instead of doing his job, does not mean the GOP needs to do the same.
    Also please, please get rid of the label Tea Party. The label is tearing apart the GOP. Again, it is time to unite and not fight.

    October 19, 2011 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  22. Neil

    Personally, I do not see anything wrong Perry did. If Romney or cain can talk of 1980 stone Perry can talk of 5 year old Illegal house help Romney hired. All in all it was entertaining!!!!

    October 19, 2011 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  23. blf83

    Perry is as over as Palin, Bachman, Newtie, and Huntsman. Romney cannot win, Cain's campaign is falling apart with each new gaffe. Give me President Obama and a congress willing to work with him to solve our nation's problems.

    October 19, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  24. GH James

    Mitt, the Man who would have let the auto industry go under, this man would have let millions of jobs go under

    October 19, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  25. Carol Wolfendale

    OBAMA 2012. Need I say more

    October 19, 2011 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
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