Rick Perry Excuses


I was playing poker on Wednesday night, so I did not watch the presidential debate, but I gathered from Jesse Walker's tweets that something entertaining had happened. The New York Times had no coverage of the debate yesterday because the news was too fresh, and it had no coverage today because the news was too stale. But it did run a story about the reaction to Perry's "debate stumble," which it described this way in the ninth paragraph: "53 seconds in which Mr. Perry struggled to name the third government agency he proposes to eliminate—the Department of Energy." This made me imagine nearly a minute of silence, punctuated only by Perry's ums and ers. Watching the segment on YouTube, I saw that it was not quite that bad, but still pretty amazing, especially since it was Perry who introduced the topic, beginning a sentence he was not equipped to finish. The slow realization by the moderator and Perry's rivals that he's not kidding is painfully priceless. Perry did much better on last night's Late Night With David Letterman, where he delivered "Top Ten Rick Perry Excuses." Below is a version that includes Letterman's monologue, which was dominated by jokes about Perry.


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  1. If I had done something that stupid, I certainly wouldn’t appear on every news show possible the next day to brag about it.

    1. I dunno about that.

      I’m not a fan of Perry, but he seemed affable enough on the Letterman show and making light of the moment will help him overall. I think it helps to diffuse some of the criticism he has been getting for the gaffe.

      1. I agree that, on the whole, it’s probably effective damage control (to the extent that it CAN be controlled). However, the fact that it will probably be effective damage control makes me embarrassed for the voting public.

  2. Perry’s self-immolation has become quite the cause at Fox, with one lifeline after another being tossed by various hosts, pundits, and self-appointed experts. Some on the network wanted Perry so badly to be ‘the man’ that his repeated displays of not being up to the task are met with a pathological level of denial.

  3. I’ll vote for Perry of he promises to have Paul always standing next to him – operating him like a ventriloquist dummy.

  4. Do people really watch Letterman?

    1. I haven’t seen him for probably 10 years. That was kinda cute though. Like Jacon, based on the reports I was expecting it to be a nuclear meltdown. I watched it last night and did not think it that bad at all. Some of the media outlets asked if it was campaign ending. I think that is ridiculas. He got excited and ahead of himself leading up to the gaff and had brain fart. I have a lot conversations with people and that happens to me and them all of the time. Of course we’ve usually been drinking but still.

      1. If he cannot even remember the three departments, how is he going to remember the nuclear codes?

        1. You WANT him to remember?

        2. He doesn’t have to remember them – they’re contained in the “football.”

      2. I don’t like Perry at all, but BFD.

        1. That was my take as well. My friendly neighborhood office liberals were positively crowing about it yesterday AM. I think they’re just nostalgic for that warm, fuzzy feeling of superiority they got when Bush was making goofy mistakes.

          1. Give me a good decision-maker, who delegates and administers effectively and learns from his mistakes, and I’m not going to worry too much about whether he occasionally slips when he speaks. Of course, all of that for me also needs to come with a commitment to free markets and limited government, but, well, you know.

            1. Pro L, we now have less than a year until election day. You’re really going to have to work on cutting out all that measured, rational, sensible sort of thinking and start working on your petty partisan point scoring skills.

              1. Each Republican candidate was carved by Jesus from the purest marble to unseat the Anti-Christ, Barack Obama.

                Well, each one except for Ron Paul and Gary Whatshisname. They are impure.

            2. I think Perry’s occassional “slips” are simply a lack of preparation. At a bare minimum, the POTUS should have the qualities you mention, AND be able to show up for a debate with a philosophy that’s more than just whatever messaging platitudes his campaign staff gives him. There is a real dearth of competence and honesty in this group of candidates, with the possible exception of the almost fanatical Ron Paul.

          2. It would have been a big deal after the first debate, but at this point isn’t it only confirming what 95% of Republicans had already figured out about Perry?

            1. ClubMedSux, you are the one with the good taste in beer, right? Who shares my love of the Lagunitas Brown Shugga’? If so, have you seen their replacement yet? I lol’d at the “Lagunitas SUCKS” on the box.

              My winter will be that much bleaker, colder, and soberer without the delicious Brown Shugga’ to warm me.

              1. Yup, that’s me. And yes, I was both saddened by their decision not to brew Brown Shugga this year and amused by the name for its replacement. Apparently it cost a LOT to brew (i.e. they lose money on it every year) and since they just finished a $9.5 million expansion project they decided to not brew it rather than jack up the price.

                I’m trying to think of what I would recommend as a replacement. You’re out west, right? I can think of a couple winter warmers I really like but they’re both midwest brews (Bell’s Old Ale and Lakefront Holiday Spice Lager).

                1. Wow, I didn’t realize they lost money on it.

                  Just looked those two up on BeerAdvocate and they sure pack a ABV punch. Yup, I’m in Seattle and locally the Maritime Pacific Jolly Roger Christmas Ale is an OK replacement. Great Divide’s Hibernation Ale is not bad either.

                  1. …Jubelale…Deschutes won’t let you down.

                    1. Dagny, if Brown Shugga’ is your bag, get ye some Matt from Hair of the Dog.

        2. Me too.

          When I’m writing something and list my eight points and then forget one, I can go back and edit it to say it’s my seven points – or I can even add a ninth if I have an epiphany in the course of writing. Of course, in spoken conversation I can’t do that. It doesn’t mean that I’m stupid, it just means that there is a limited number of things I can keep in my consciousness at any one time – something which is common to all of us. I’d much rather have a president who can think things through than one who has a ready answer to everything … that happens to be wrong.

          Thomas Jefferson was reputedly a poor speaker, but he was an excellent writer and thinker. It is doubtful that he would be electable today – and that is precisely the problem.

          That said, I’m still no fan of Perry – but not because of this.

      3. The thing is, it wasn’t just the brain fart. It was the culmination of a really lousy performance. He started out with a meaningless canned speech, then everything else he said was incoherent. The final straw was losing it in the canned copy Ron Paul moment.

    2. If I was Perry, I’d be more embarrassed reading what Letterman’s lame joke writers barfed up. Are they all 60 year old men or something?

  5. Reason # 4 El Nino


  6. So, what should I name my Argonian in Skyrim?

    1. Jason?

      1. Or maybe Iason?

    2. I like the name Clovis if you’re beating or stabbing stuff.

    3. Not enough Bob’s in RPGs.

      Also, what the hell is the BFD with Skyrim?

      1. It’s getting rave reviews, but the big driver is that many people loved its predecessor, Oblivion.

        1. Which was so great that most people didn’t play the game as is and downloaded all kinds of extra skins and packs to plug into it. Although I guess for some people that is what really draws them in.

        2. All four have been good but I think Oblivion brought in the console crowd.

      2. Every time I read “skyrim” a part of me thinks it’s referring to a sex act performed by astronauts.

    4. Argo the Argonian

      1. Clutch Cargo the Argo?

  7. Not there was any real danger of my voting for Perry in the first place…

  8. This is just a stark display of how the media equates good public speaking with competence. I wouldn’t vote for Perry, but this gaffe has nothing to do with my decision.

  9. Despite all the crap George W. Bush took for debate performance, he was actually pretty good in 2000. Could you imagine ANY of the goobers on stage now doing that curt head nod that Bush did when Gore got in his face? Maybe it wasn’t that Bush was so good, but rather Gore was so bad.

  10. Perry’s Top 10 delivery was excellent.

    Not sure how valuable the top-10-reading skill is for a president, but then I’m not sure how valuable debating skill is for a president either.

  11. Finding a good supplement is one of the key factors to living a vibrant life. For me, this vitamin has always proven to be the most effective. It just gives your soul what it needs and it doesn’t have all of those harmful side effects as all of the poorer ones. It’s also one of the less costly ones out there.

  12. It’s easy to remember your convictions but it’s hard to remember talking points designed to portray you as a straight shooter.

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