Perry expresses regret over taking part in debates
October 25th, 2011
10:43 PM ET
9 years ago

Perry expresses regret over taking part in debates

(CNN) - GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry said if he had made any mistakes thus far in the campaign, it was "probably ever doing one of the" debates.

"All they’re interested in is stirring it up between the candidates instead of really talking about the issues that are important to the American people," Perry said on Fox News Tuesday.

Answering criticism over his debate performances, the Texas governor has repeatedly said Americans weren't looking for the "slickest" candidate or the smoothest debater in the race.

Perry, who rolled out his flat-tax plan Tuesday in South Carolina, again said he used the wrong word when describing people who disagreed with him on immigration as "heartless."

He first dialed back his remark in late September after facing a strong reaction from within the GOP.

Perry originally made the comment at the Fox News/Google debate in Florida after taking heat for signing off on a Texas law that allows tuition credits to certain illegal immigrants at public universities.

In the interview Tuesday, Perry also took a shot at former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who sparred with Perry during the CNN Western Republican Presidential Debate last week in Las Vegas.

Continuing his attack on Romney as a flip-flopper, Perry said: "In his own words, he says 'Listen, I need to say whatever I need to say for whatever office I'm running for'."

Also see:

Perry to meet with S.C. governor

Perry on Obama: 'It's fun to poke at him'

Perry to meet with DeMint

Filed under: 2012 • Rick Perry
soundoff (437 Responses)
  1. Disgustipated

    His other regret should be associating with FOX News network, look what it did for Palin.

    October 26, 2011 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  2. Pravaa

    Does he really think situation room decisions are reached at in a micro second?Am sure that there is extensive debating of issues and scenarios before an executive decision is taken. At least that's how I hope it is done. And this guy just wants to yahoo his way into the white house without showing his debating prowess? It is a known fact that he got away with as few debates as possible while running for Texas gov.

    October 26, 2011 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  3. lakerat

    Perry has continually refused to debate his oponents in the Texas Govenor elections so it comes as no suprise to me that he regrets having to prove on national television what some of us (unfortunately not the majority otherwise this clown would never have been elected in the first place) already knew. He has no skills as a debator for the masses nor the skills to be the leader of a superpower nation. Alas – we'll have to put up with him back in Texas licking his wounds after this fiasco is ended,

    October 26, 2011 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  4. Stacey

    I AGREE with Perry on this. These "debates" have been "jury-rigged" from the beginning....and have served more to "manipulate" the voting Public that to inform them. The "Media" has OBVIOUSLY "manipulated" the debates by which candidates they allow and those that they DON'T INVITE. It has been PROPAGANDA of the worst sort. That sort of manipulation by the Press (Media) reminds me of the old Soviet Russia. DISGUSTING !!! ...and certainly "Un-American".

    Jury-rigged or not, those debates show how inept and stupid Rick Perry is. Perry's stupidity is not propaganda – it's real and those debates have exposed him. I don't need manipulation to see how incredibly stupid Perry is. Isn't this the same idiot who made a statement about seceding from the United States? No one manipulated Perry to say that – he just said it because he pretty dumb.

    October 26, 2011 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  5. Northern State

    If Perry is the new face of the evangelical movement (Now that Ted Haggard and Michele Bachman are down the tubes), you guys are in trouble. Perry couldn't negotiate his way through a toilet stall, much less a multi-lateral trade deal. Aren't there some NORMAL people among your ranks? The only people we ever see you bible-thumpers send up from the minors.... are a bunch of ignorant mutants. It's becoming a kind of charity, even putting them on TV.

    October 26, 2011 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  6. GI Joe

    he has cold unfeeling eyes like a shark ...........................................

    October 26, 2011 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  7. gu4u2

    Perry: Spoke like a loser. If he could only win the presidency without "debates".

    October 26, 2011 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  8. randumbguy

    Remember the old saying: "How does a movie starlet look smart? Stand there and don't say anything." Perry opened his mouth and something other than the sound bites his handlers had been trying to implant came out. He's a dullard and it showed. So, yes, from his perspective it was a poor move to expose his deficits in debates.

    October 26, 2011 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  9. Romney2012

    Perry, I haven't heard this much whining since your wife spoke. Cheer up, friend. Fifth place is not bad. Even when it's out of six people. Keep whining like a kitten in a tree. Maybe you can get to sixth before the end of the month.

    October 26, 2011 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  10. Jepp

    Ha ha ha ha. Take your toys and go home Perry. You suck and don't have a clue about the issues.

    Oh and by the way you can't blame the Dems for your own Republicans trashing you. Go back to Texas and secede from the Union like you want to. See how far that gets you.

    October 26, 2011 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  11. Reasonably

    If I offend you with what I say, I take it back. support this? OK – I meant it then. Wait – you in the back, you don't like it? Well, I didn't mean it then. But this poll says the people like it so – that's my stance. Populists – every one of them.

    October 26, 2011 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  12. TommiGI

    Yeah, keeping everything secret and campaigning from sound bites would be more akin to his secret Dominionist background.

    October 26, 2011 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  13. Me

    And here I thought the answer would be running....

    October 26, 2011 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  14. Kimo

    Obviously, he is like Palin and others who want to say whatever they want without being challenged. If you can't debate successfully you have no business running.

    October 26, 2011 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  15. AL in West Palm Beach

    In Texas:
    1. You can win an election w/o debating anyone Ricky.
    2. You can also speak fast and say nothing.
    3. You can smirk and not smile

    But in these parts:
    1. You can't debate you can't win...just ask Sarah (greasly bear) Palin.
    2. You need to wear speak slowly, and carry bigger words.
    3. You can smile and have a million drones ready to pounce....ask Obama how it's done.

    October 26, 2011 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  16. DandyStryker

    News flash: Perry regrets opening mouth. Spin doctors to work through the night, to remove his foot. Details at 11.

    October 26, 2011 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  17. CTexas

    It's obvious that Perry did not benefit from the debates. Hence he has a negative view of them. If he had "won" the debates he wouldn't be so negative would he?

    October 26, 2011 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  18. Dandy

    Once again Rick the Dick Perry confirms that he is brainless.... What a stupid statement!!!
    I am absolutely amazed with some of the nitwits that the Republicans put up for candidates...
    Think of it. Bachmann, Perry, Palin.... it goes on and on.
    There must be a very serious lack on intelligence in parts of the Republican party.
    I mean, really dumb. Like "I can't remember where I live" dumb.
    This clown should have never made it to Governor.
    The Republicans scare me since I always thought the people in the US were smarter than this.

    October 26, 2011 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  19. Stand Up

    This is the best we can do? Rick Frickin' Perry crying to the news again about how hard it all is? This guy has more tears and drama than Lindsay Lohan. It was fun for a while. But it's time to flush this steamer and get back to work.

    October 26, 2011 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  20. Doc M

    This guy and all other GOP wackos remind me why I'm voting for Obama!

    October 26, 2011 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  21. NameMorpunkt

    Too late Perry. It was a blessing for us to witness your low IQ.
    Now, go home to Texas.

    October 26, 2011 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  22. B W Styles

    Of course he regrets debating; "better to keep quiet and be thought a fool...

    October 26, 2011 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  23. Copper's Donut Shoppe

    To call those dog and pony shows debates is to insult every high school and college student who participated in debates that were real.
    Stupid pretend silliness and they still look like fools.
    When is some infotainment person going to ask Parry why he let an innocent man be executed?.

    October 26, 2011 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  24. sofunny

    Your biggest misstake is yet to come. One of them is your wife, "God told him to run for President" How special that you have a cell phone directly to GOD. You should be ashamed of yourself!

    October 26, 2011 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  25. aggie95

    So he says his biggest mistake was probably participating in any of the debates? Hmmm...Sounds like his biggest mistake was ever running for POTUS. And that's coming from a fellow Texan and Aggie. Rick, dude, just get out now while you have almost no dignity left. It would be better than waiting until you have NO dignity, which it's now fast approaching.

    October 26, 2011 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
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