Perry questions intentions of American diplomats
November 7th, 2011
10:50 PM ET
2 years ago

Perry questions intentions of American diplomats

(CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry said Monday he didn’t think some State Department employees were working in the best interest of the country.

“I’m not sure our State Department serves us well,” the Texas governor said on a radio program with Fox News host Bill O’Reilly. “I’m not talking about the Secretary of State here. I’m talking about the career diplomats and the Secretary of State who, all too often, may not be making decisions, or giving advice to the administration that’s in this country’s best interest.”

Perry said Congressional action might be required to ensure the nation’s diplomatic corps is taking actions that benefit America.

“We need to have a discussion with Congress to make sure that the decisions that are being made are in America’s best interest,” Perry said.

Perry said tougher action was required in Pakistan, where he suggested the Pakistani intelligence agency was involved in actions harmful to America. Perry said the message to Pakistan hasn’t been clear enough from the United States.

“We need to lay down the law to Pakistan,” Perry said.

Perry also downplayed President Barack Obama’s role in killing Osama bin Laden, saying the military infrastructure that was already in place had a greater role in finding al Qaeda leader.

“I’ll promise you, those Navy SEALs that took out bin Laden, they knew what they were doing a long time before the president of the United States took office,” Perry said.

“So please don’t come in here and say, ‘I inherited all these problems’ and over here, ‘I did all this.’ No thank you, Mr. President. We know how those things were done. It was because of the dedication and the focus and the professionalism of the military men and women of this country; not because he ended up being the President of the United States.”


Filed under: 2012 • Rick Perry • State Department
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. zachary

    Considering Pakistan is a sovereign nation we can't lay down the law. I'm trying to frigure out if Governor Perry honestly believes he can blame the current administration for a financial collapse that did in fact start before their term, and not give credit for a military operation that was ordered by the sitting administration. This is utter nonsense, was he drunk when he made these statements too?

    November 8, 2011 02:45 am at 2:45 am |
  2. I'm not talking about Rick Perry, I'm talking about Rick Perry

    Is he talking about the Sec of State or not? This guy is confused. Please don't vote for him.

    November 8, 2011 03:18 am at 3:18 am |
  3. colt45

    Has Rick Perry even read "Three Cups of Tea"? And just what does he mean by "laying down the law" to the Pakistanis? Like THAT would be a great idea (my sarcasm). Perry had best leave the very complex world of diplomacy to the diplomats who actually have extensive education and training in the field. Unlike Rick Perry.

    November 8, 2011 03:31 am at 3:31 am |
  4. Joebob

    Mr. Perry what on earth would you know about diplomacy?

    November 8, 2011 03:33 am at 3:33 am |
  5. MarineWill

    OMG! And some people want this guy to be president! Specifically what decisions are not in the best in the country? Lay down what law to Pakistan? President Obama's re-election chances improve every day during this republican primary.

    November 8, 2011 05:13 am at 5:13 am |
  6. dreucalypt

    The ugliest feature of Perry's ugliest candidacy is his habit of calling anyone whose views aren't exactly his own a traitor. I would fear for our freedom if that man ever became President.

    November 8, 2011 06:57 am at 6:57 am |
  7. Indy

    I’m not talking about the Secretary of State here. I’m talking about the career diplomats and the Secretary of State who, all too often, may not be making decisions, or giving advice to the administration that’s in this country’s best interest.”

    Perry is trying to out flip Romney here but flopping within the same sentence, I am not talking about the Secretary of State but the Secretary of State and diplomats. Perry is calling everyone anti American and and claiming that President Obama did not make the final call on Osama Bin Laden but he fails the history test as everyone knows Bush lost interest in his freind Bin Laden. I am pretty certain that all military families did not sacrifice their lives to come home to be held hostage by the Republican party that only serves 1% of the country.

    November 8, 2011 07:27 am at 7:27 am |
  8. Doyle Wiley, MI

    Perry, it sometimes better to keep your friends close and your enemy closer. By the way, the President has always given credit to the military for there accomplishments. But, the President is the Commander and Chief of the military so the buck stops with him. Perry, you may gain some credibility if you would give the President some (just a little) credit for the things that goes right.

    November 8, 2011 07:40 am at 7:40 am |
  9. KatR

    It was because of the dedication and the focus and the professionalism of the military men and women of this country; not because he ended up being the President of the United States.”

    As a Navy vet I know about professionalism of our military. I also know that the military does not act until the Commander in Chief gives the order. Pres. Obama constitutionally fills that role right now. The plan to take out OBL would not have happened if the CIC had not given the order to do so.

    November 8, 2011 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
  10. ATL Guy

    The more these Republicans talk, the more they demonstrate that they are not fit to lead.

    November 8, 2011 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  11. krm1007

    WE SALUTE YOU, PAKISTAN......The Americans acknowledge the innumerable sacrifices made by Pakistanis in this ongoing war. The Americans appreciate the bullets taken on the chest by the Pakistanis in fighting the enemy. The Americans appreciate the ultimate sacrifices made by Pakistanis in sacrificing their lives while trying to make America and the world safe.

    November 8, 2011 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  12. krm1007

    Who won the Viet Nam war for Americans on the battlefields of Afghanistan.....PAKISTAN. Who defeated the communist Soviets.....in the killing fields of Afghanistan......PAKISTAN. The road to peace and prosperity in this world has been paved with the blood of Pakistanis. If this is the intelligence level of Perry, then I am afraid he does not have a chance in the Prez elections. He should stick to being a cowboy. Adios Amigo.

    November 8, 2011 08:13 am at 8:13 am |
  13. GOP = Greed Over People

    “So please don’t come in here and say, ‘I inherited all these problems’ and over here, ‘I did all this.’ No thank you, Mr. President."

    So, would that be anything like the shrub dressed in a jumpsuit standing on a carrier yammerin' about what HE had done in front of a "Mission Accomplished" banner after bombing an entire country looking for phantom WMD's?

    November 8, 2011 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  14. GI Joe

    What is it that makes republicans so paranoid? Maybe because they know their own intentions are not good.

    November 8, 2011 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  15. Francesca

    Wow. Someone please tell this guy that it's the career Foreign Service officers who have the knowledge and experience, yet Congress, the Defense Dept and the White House don't really listen to them all that much. That's reflected in the less than 1 percent of the federal budget that's devoted to foreign affairs. Mr. Perry has betrayed his ignorance on this subject, I'm afraid.

    November 8, 2011 08:33 am at 8:33 am |
  16. lgny

    "I’m talking about the career diplomats and the Secretary of State who, all too often, may not be making decisions, or giving advice to the administration that’s in this country’s best interest." - This sounds like he's trying to resurrect the ghost of Senator McCarthy. What comes next? - accusing them of treason?!!

    November 8, 2011 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  17. Keith in Austin

    @CNN: With regard to State Department concerns, why have you not reported the gaffe committed by Obama and Sarkowsky at the G20 Summit last week when they were caught trashing the Prime Minister of Israel while not knowing their microphones were still on? Considering the fact that Israel is our strongest ally in the Middle East, Obama's comments certainly don't help our State Department with diplomacy there. Still, you focus on Rick Perry and chose to "overlook" the more important story! Wonder why???

    November 8, 2011 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  18. Phil in KC

    This guy says he's not talking about the Secretary of State then, in the very next sentence, says he is talking about the Secretary of State. Instant flip-flop. Quite frankly, I'll take the foreign policy advice of a career diplomat over some Texas 'cowboy' any day. We've all seen what kind of a mess that gets us into. It's taken us 3 years to recover from the last one.

    November 8, 2011 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  19. Rudy NYC

    “So please don’t come in here and say, ‘I inherited all these problems’ and over here, ‘I did all this.’ No thank you, Mr. President. We know how those things were done. It was because of the dedication and the focus and the professionalism of the military men and women of this country; not because he ended up being the President of the United States.”
    ------------
    Hey, Governer. I hate tell you this but the President of the United States holds the title Commander-In-Chief for a very good and simple reason. Because he is. President Obama made the decision to go in, and how to go in after Bin Laden. I see from your earlier remarks in the article that you probably would have invaded Pakistan. Good-bye, Governer.

    November 8, 2011 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  20. AL VIDAL

    i find it amusing that democrats continue to say that the republicans only stand to defend 1% of the country .... even by their own standards.... by their own words.... what they are saying, that more that 50% of the nation (REPUBLICANS) are all about 1% of the country.... anyone notice any contradiction here ????. Democrats.... REMEMBER how many times REAGAN won on a LANDSLIDE ????... BUSH himself was NEVER defeated by your party.... TWICE he kick your rear ends.... Winning elections is what republicans are best known for....even Bill Clinton continously remind you of that... and Yet you continue the same silly line... REPUBLICAN are about 1%.... if that was true, republicans would never win any ELECTION... ask OBAMA if He remembers the SHILLACKING (obama's own words) of 2010. Oh yes, only 1% keeps kicking your teeth in, in the history of contry's electoral process.... REALLY !!!! lol...

    November 8, 2011 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  21. a in austin

    How is this any different than our own elected officials in Congress not doing what's best for the country. Another career politician ...

    November 8, 2011 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  22. Kenny K

    Perry takes credit for jobs created under his (Perry's) administration as governor, but fails to give credit to the President for what happened under his (the President) command. This should have been otherwise because the Republicans do not believe that government create jobs.

    November 8, 2011 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  23. The Greedy Old PIgs have declared class war on US!

    "have not heard a single viable idea, from any of them, as to how to fix the mess that Obama has created."

    It doesn't help when you start with a false premise. Obama inherited this mess from GWB and the GOBP deathcult, who have continued in their efforts to make things even worse since President Obama was elected. Open you eyes, robot.

    November 8, 2011 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  24. Roger

    The nerve of this shyster impuning Sec. of State Hillary Clinton and the state department! They have done and continue to do a stellar job in the face of mounting international crises and the whole country should be proud of their service. Go back to Austin, Governor and rope some cattle or something you know about.

    November 8, 2011 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  25. Penobscot

    This guy has NO IDEA what he is talking about. He shoots from the hip way too much to represent America as its President.

    November 8, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
1 2 3