Perry kisses off Romney criticism: 'Give him my love'
August 15th, 2011
04:22 PM ET
11 years ago

Perry kisses off Romney criticism: 'Give him my love'

Des Moines, Iowa (CNN) – Texas governor Rick Perry blew a kiss to Mitt Romney on Monday, kissing off criticism from the former Massachusetts governor and saying, "Give him my love."

The newly-minted Republican presidential candidate was responding to criticism from Romney during a visit to the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines. In New Hampshire earlier Monday, Romney said he is the only contender in the GOP presidential race with extensive experience in both business and government.

CNN asked Perry about the criticism.

Pressing his hands to his lips - then blowing a kiss – Perry's message to Romney: "Give him my love."

CNN pressed Perry on the substance of Romney's dig.

"I think it's oranges and apples," Perry said. "Running a state is different from running a business. What I would say is go take a look at his [Romney's] record when he was governor and my record when I'm governor. Then you got some apples to apples."

Romney isn't the only GOP competitor Perry addressed from the booth of the Iowa Republican Party. CNN also asked the Texas governor about criticism from fellow GOP candidate Michele Bachmann's campaign, which has criticized Perry for not participating in last week's GOP presidential debate or the Ames straw poll on Saturday.

Perry's response to that was essentially a verbal kiss off.

"We're here," Perry said.

Perry visited the Iowa GOP booth after speaking at the "soapbox" at the state fair – a few bales of hay where presidential contenders have addressed supporters, the press and critics since last week. The governor laced his speech with a mix of policy prowess, job-creation bombast and southern folksiness.

"I know what this country needs. And we need to get Americans back working," Perry thundered. "We need to be able to create an environment in this country where anybody that wants to work can find that job. And I'm really proud of what we've done in the state of Texas in the last decade."

Perry continued: "40 percent of all the jobs created in America – from June of 2009 until the present – were created in Texas. I know how to create jobs. You let the private sector - free them up from over taxation, free them up from over regulation, free them up from over litigation. And government, get out of the way. Let the private sector do what the private sector do what it knows how to do."

The Texas governor also spoke about President Obama's Midwest bus tour.

"He's coming into Iowa here in a little bit. And I'm asking him to do something," Perry said. "He says he's on a listening tour. So I'm gonna talk to him. And here's what I wanna say to him. 'Mister President, you need to free up the employers of this country to create jobs.'"

While Perry is making job creation in Texas the centerpiece of his presidential campaign, there is more to the story.

CNN Money reports that "Texas leads the nation in minimum-wage jobs, and many positions don't offer health benefits. Also, steep budget cuts are expected to result in the loss of more than 100,000 jobs."

The site also reports that "Texas enjoys advantages that have nothing to do with having Perry at the helm."

Meanwhile, Perry showed off some of his southern charm that's attracted supporters and could woo others.

The governor talked about his love for the Second Amendment's right to bear arms.

"You know what. That's kind of one of my favorite amendments," Perry said.

"The Second Amendment allows me to go jogging with my daughter's dog over here. And if a coyote jumps out, I can take care of it."

Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Mitt Romney • Rick Perry
soundoff (122 Responses)
  1. ted

    Free up the employers to create jobs? What? They got their Bush tax cut extension. They got no new taxes in the latest debt deal. You want total deregulation? Gee, that is what caused the banking fiasco in 2008 that plunged us into the Great Recession, Perry, courtesy Dubya Bush, a fellow delusional lunatic Texan. Problem with the jobs YOU say you created is that they are mostly minimum wage jobs. Excellent. Each person now needs three minimum wage jobs to try to stay afloat. You are just yet another rightwing nutjob.
    Obama/Biden 2012

    August 15, 2011 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  2. rdg18

    Anyone is better than Odumbo.

    August 15, 2011 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  3. rdg18

    Odumbo's latest approval: 39%. The chance I would ever vote for a demorat: 0%

    August 15, 2011 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  4. GI Joe

    Does Perry have the voter machine programs that Bush used to get most of the votes in Ohio? It was obvious to me - but then, I'm an educated liberal.

    August 15, 2011 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  5. Mindie from India

    This from the man who took $billions from Obama to help his state 'balance their budget'. These people wonder why we call them hypocrites and we've wondered why they called themselves Christians, now they're nothing more than domestic terrorists.

    August 15, 2011 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  6. it's scary

    I can't believe that half of this country is still dumb enough to vote for someone like this... I mean really?

    Maybe we really should divide the country in half. Slave-owning, religious southern nut jobs can have the South, and Kansas. The rest of the country will consist of middle class, common sense folks who base their actions more on science than religion...

    I'm so tired of the idiocracy ( thank you Mike Judge ) that the still GOP is trying push us into... If Perry or Bachmann get elected president, I'm SO OUTTA HERE! hello Canada, here I come.

    August 15, 2011 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  7. thomas

    Perry was chosen by God , God told him to take the money from Enron and do good deeds with it !

    All the morons who voted for Bush and enjoy looking for WMDs will love RICK PERRY !

    Fool me once shame on me , fool me twice elect another Texan !

    August 15, 2011 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  8. LeeAT

    For all of you who don't know Rick Perry; if you thought "W" was arrogant, as we say in Texas, you ain't seen nothing yet. If you want to finish destroying the world's economy that "W" started; elect Rick Perry for president. Since he is such a fine Christian and such a moral conservative, why is he so cheep when it comes to supporting his church. If you believe in tithing, the formula is 10%, which means we would elect a man who cannot do math, because he gives nowhere near 1%. How is he going to balance the budget when he doesn't know what 10% of his income is? Just wondering and warning. Don't be fooled by all of the boasting that you are about to hear for the next 15 months. We need to face the fact in America that all of the parties are filled with nothing but political rhetoric and every candidate will say what they think people want to hear just to get elected. They don't care about us, they care about getting elected and fulfilling some childhood dream of being an elected official. They are not saviors for our country, they are politicians. That being said; in our generation we are always faced with the choice of the lesser of two evils. Obama was the lesser in "08 and trust me, he will be the lesser in 2012. Not because I think that he is such a great president, but he does try to represent the United States of America and not just an elite few.

    August 15, 2011 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  9. Independent Texan

    Lets see-- low wages, practically zero gov`t regulations, no labor protection at all, and a two-tier class system (haves/ have nots) --– How about CHINA !!!!!!!!!.

    August 15, 2011 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  10. keeth in cali

    Ask Rick Perry about Cameron Todd Willingham. Google it.

    August 15, 2011 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  11. conoclast

    Oh, another right-winger running his mouth about 'jobs' - just like in the 2010 campaign, huh? Then of course, when the ideological rubber hit the road in congress the 2010 class conveniently forgot that the employment problem ever existed- as in ZERO jobs bills introduced! Perry is nothing but a male Sarah Palin; they'd make a great ticket - if one of their ego's could countenance being veep!

    August 15, 2011 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  12. Squealy

    When are these right wing candidates going to realize you can't run the country on air? Oh, they are trying hard, but the fewer and fewer taxes collected, the worse and worse it gets. It is not ALL overspending, a good portion is underfunding.

    August 15, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  13. diridi

    This guy is a total idiot...I mean "Idiot". o.k, Do you want another Bush in White House..????Shame....America...Shame...nasty thugs of GOP.....Corporate thugs ruin....

    August 15, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  14. Discernment

    ROMNEY IS CORRECT . . . BUT . . .

    Of the remaining 'serious' GOP contenders, Mitt Romney is the only Presidential candidate that CONSISENTLY wear multiple faces. Romney will emphatically state one principle today, , , but will change his principles when the wind blows in opposite direction.

    Romney is character-less. He portrays a man of character, but quickly shuns all traits of character when the heat is on.

    August 15, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  15. IronCelt

    How sweet of Perry to "kiss" and "love" his opponent. Perry has never had an "official" private sector job–he just lives off the state and his busy schedule of corruption. Love to you too, Blagojevich. Perry is his corrupt twin.

    August 15, 2011 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  16. Billy Davis

    Rick Perry refuses ro debate. But watch how he stumbles when he actually has to do one.

    August 15, 2011 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  17. w l jones

    Of all the candidate running for office of the president only one has experience ,the present president. Enough said.

    August 15, 2011 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  18. BeverlyNC

    I just got back from visiting relatives in TX – both diehard Democrats and diehard Republicans. One thing they ALL agreed upon- THEY HATE THEIR GOVERNOR RICK PERRY.
    They described him as "phony", "devious", definitely not a Christian", "a liar about his accomplishments", and if anyone would take a real close look at him and all the destruction he has done to Texas, he would not be considered a credible candidate by the Republican Party. Even the TX Republicans in my family said there is 'NO WAY THEY WOULD VOTE FOR HIM FOR PRESIDENT. THEY WOULD VOTE FOR OBAMA BEFORE PERRY"

    Beleve me – my Republican relatives are so diehard Republican we usually have to just agree to avoid the topic of politics, but they all agree PERRY IS NOT PRESIDENTIAL MATERIAL AND HATE HIM.

    August 15, 2011 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  19. steve a ,New Braunfels,Texas

    To mathew at 4;49 pm, Perry was also a cheerleader!!!!!!!!at A&M, and he was a pilot but not a "fighter Pilot" check it out.....I'm voting for Obama agin and I don't care how the Right Hypes there glorious ones.

    August 15, 2011 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  20. GreenJeans

    "...Perry thundered."

    I'm from Texas, and Perry doesn't thunder. Quite the opposite. Listen closely; we may need to send him to Bachman's "clinic".

    August 15, 2011 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  21. Mousebrown

    Rick is a little too slick for me. Romney is the best choice for 2012.

    August 15, 2011 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  22. Leonore H. Dvorkin

    Go, Perry! You are even more of a gift to us Democrats than Michele Bachmann is. Ha, ha, ha ! We just love watch you far right-wing, ultra-religious loonies destroy the Republican party.

    August 15, 2011 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  23. Tony

    Jefferson Davis Perry is not welcome in my state.

    This secessionist throwback to the 1950's who doesn't believe in America, the Constitution or anything American should be barred from travel in any state but Texas, they can have him!

    August 15, 2011 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  24. Victoria

    SecedingfromTexas, don't forget that here in Texas we are paying for his high-priced rental while the Governor's Mansion is being renovated. I'm quite sure we are also footing the bill for his hair care regimen (you know he prides himself on that) and the wife's vacations she enjoys so much.

    August 15, 2011 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  25. Perry is a Teaturd

    Saying we expect too much for jobs to pay more than minimum wage? Way to capitulate the American worker to 3rd world wages. Way to empower the corporatiom as god.

    August 15, 2011 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
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