Our friend Doug MacKinnon, a former White House and Pentagon official and author, writes:
Okay, so here are some unsolicited but heartfelt words of caution for Governor Rick Perry of Texas as he contemplates whether to enter the Republican primary for President of the United States.
As you and your trusted aides crunch numbers, take the pulse of major donors, look at various match-ups in states like Iowa, South Carolina, and Florida, please keep this in mind: The conservatives, Republicans, independents, and even the growing number of Democrats who embrace traditional values and strongly oppose Barack Obama and his socialist tendencies, are tired. They are bone tired, worried beyond words, and quite frankly sick of one pretend GOP candidate after the other leaving them at the altar. Enough.
Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana, Governor Haley Barbour of Mississippi, or former Governor Mike Huckabee--all teased voters in desperate search of a candidate who might spare the nation further damage from the far-left ideology of President Obama and his allies, with a potential or pending run, and all finally declined the challenge. All offered plausible and personal reasons for not entering the area. Fine. We can respect if not understand those choices.
For tens of millions of Americans who see our Republic coming off the rails as unemployment rises, public employee unions cripple the financial well-being of a growing list of cities, counties, and states, the housing market continues to tank, corrupt teachers’ unions putting themselves well before public school children, our health-care system being hijacked by liberal zealots, our sovereign borders becoming more porous, and Islamic terrorist groups outside and inside our borders plotting their next horrific attack, it’s become harder and harder for them to understand why the minute handful of Republicans who could possibly make a positive difference have decided to take a powder on the fight of our lives. Very hard.
Now we have Governor Rick Perry. Over the course of the last few weeks, I have heard from a significant number of conservatives asking me if I thought Perry was serious? They, like me, think he is a talented, ethical, and traditional values espousing public servant and are beyond desperate for him to enter the toughest and most crucial of electoral arenas.
During his exceptional and stirring remarks at the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans on June 18th, Governor Perry spoke like a man who got it. During the course of his speech -- which inspired a majority in the audience to jump up from their chairs on numerous occasions -- the Governor wondered if nothing was done to stem the liberal destruction of our values, would future generations ask, “Why didn’t someone do something?” He quickly followed up that question by saying, “In Texas we truly believe that you can’t defer tough decisions for tomorrow’s generation.”
Finally, as the Governor of a state which is responsible for over 47% of all jobs created in the entire nation over the last two years, he asked, “If we don’t do it, who will? If not now, when?”
During his remarks, the Governor stressed the need for, and the power of conservative principles. Millions of Americans believe Rick Perry to be a highly principled conservative. Because of that, they are willing to take that one last walk down the aisle.
However, should they be abandoned at the altar once again, not only will their hopes for a better, more prosperous, and more secure country dashed, but their faith in their leaders will be damaged to the core.
Run, Rick, run.