Citizenship check causes controversy at Perry event
November 16th, 2011
12:05 PM ET
11 years ago

Citizenship check causes controversy at Perry event

Manchester, New Hampshire (CNN) - Rick Perry's campaign moved quickly Wednesday to correct an employee's inaccurate statement that non-United States citizens would not be allowed to attend a town hall the Texas governor held at a plant.

The event was hosted by Granite State Manufacturing, which does defense contracting work. An employee checking in members of the news media at the entrance asked each person for his identification and whether he was a citizen.

When asked what would happen if a person were not a United States citizen, the woman said she would deny them entrance.

The Perry campaign brought Granite State Manufacturing Facilities Manager Shawn O'Hagan to the press area to tell reporters that was not true.

O'Hagan said the woman had been misinformed by another employee. Non-citizens would be allowed to enter, but the company would assign an employee escort to accompany them, which is standard for defense contractors complying with NAFTA rules and applies to anyone entering the building.

Everyone who checked in said he or she was an American citizen, the employee checking in press members said.

At GOP rival Jon Huntsman's town hall at the same company earlier this year, journalists were asked not to film some areas of the factory that contained proprietary information.

A Perry aide pointed to other political events at defense contracting companies where attendees were subject to similar rules.

Filed under: 2012 • New Hampshire • Rick Perry
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Phil in KC

    How did this guy get elected in Texas?

    November 16, 2011 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  2. Woman In California

    These GOP candidates spend most of their time denying allegations instead of what they are going to do on the most important issues facing Americans. Is this what we can expect should they become elected?

    November 16, 2011 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  3. MTATL67

    Now that's leadership...send this guy back to Austin.

    November 16, 2011 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  4. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    How did career politician, Sen. Hutchinson, lose to this clueless part time life long politician?

    November 16, 2011 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  5. easydoesit

    How is this govenor perry's fault in any way? These stories are totally insane our media has lost control.

    November 16, 2011 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  6. Al-NY,NY

    Kinda reminds of that scene from Pink Floyd's "The Wall" movie at the rally towards the end..."are there any -– in the theater tonite? Get em up against the wall. There's one in the spotlight.He don't look right to me. Get em up against the wall.."

    November 16, 2011 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  7. Robert

    So, we should now let non-US citizens into Defense Contractor locations? Great, Rick, great...

    November 16, 2011 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  8. Pam

    "Ooops! Did we say that?"
    Geez! It is a new laugh every day with these guys!!

    November 16, 2011 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  9. Rick McDaniel

    That was a defense regulation issue, clearly.

    November 16, 2011 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  10. Thomas

    Dose anybody remember ENRON ?
    Look up Perry , Bush and the fall of Enron. Perry wants to abolish the energy department so his backers can own it .

    This countries economic wows started in 2002 , then add on the debt of two ten year wars.

    If you want America to end up like Enron , vote Perry !

    November 16, 2011 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  11. bilk7

    How did this guy get elected in Texas?

    Texas ranks among the lowest in education; that may give you an answer. Also look at the electorate. People like George W. Bush and Roger Clemens are Texans.....not the brightest bulbs on the tree. .

    November 16, 2011 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  12. OldAlaskan

    What's the beef?? Non-citizens can't vote, and it is a DEFENSE installation, where this is standard security protocol.

    November 16, 2011 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  13. Cyrus

    As much as I dislike Perry, by law, all defense facilities, as well as of their contractors and sub-contractors have citizenship requirements. Then again, that stupidity implies that no American citizen every betrayed his/her country.

    November 16, 2011 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  14. Jack

    Waht a bunch of wankers this GOP line up is. I have to admit, however, it is very entertaining. It's like "Laurel and Hardy Run for President."

    November 16, 2011 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  15. Me

    Well, gee, anyone can answer "yes" if they are a US citizen. How do you prove it? Walk around with your birth certificate? Why, that's ridiculous. Do you hear that GOP? Why didn't you ask the people to prove it like you did of the President and now of all the tan people in the US?

    November 16, 2011 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  16. Lost in Texas FOREVER AND EVER

    our guvnor here in Texas is in favor of allowing the kids of illegals to get in state tutiton so why in the HECK would he NOT allow a non-citizen to come to this event? The latter reason is what is sinking him in the polls not the things he does and says that seem to be uncouth. The far right doesn't mind having them not too bright but they DO mind being called "heartless" when it comes to not liking to treat kids of illegals nice.

    November 16, 2011 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  17. Patriot Awesome

    Perry is a Republican Frankenstein monster. He has the face of Bush, the hair of Reagan, the skin oh Boehner, and the brain of Sarah Palin.

    November 16, 2011 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  18. Dean

    Sounds like all the liberals would allow a citizen of any country into an American company that does defense contracting work for the U.S. government.
    Do you also want to do away with security clearances and allow all information to everyone?

    November 16, 2011 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  19. mike halter

    What has happened to the Republican Party? The Party I know from days of old was not afraid to work with fellow
    Congress members from the other Party for the good of all Americans. Now I just dont know I'm scared for our

    November 16, 2011 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |