- James Richard “Rick” Perry was born March 4, 1950, in Paint Creek, Texas. His parents were ranchers and his father, Ray Perry, was a Haskell County Commissioner, school board member, Democrat, and a WWII tail gunner.a1
- Rick Perry has never lost an election during his three decades of working in government.r
- While Rick Perry hasn’t been associated with any sex scandals yet, a Ron Paul supporter is actively searching for one. He has announced that he is placing an ad in a paper asking anyone if they had ever had sex with Rick Perry.u
Perry is the longest serving governor of Texas
- Perry is the longest-serving governor of Texas. He is also the longest continuously serving current U.S. governor and the second-longest-serving current U.S. governor after Terry Branstad of Iowa.a1
- Rick Perry and his wife, Anita Thigpen, first met at an elementary school recital program, and went on their first date when he was sixteen years old. Sixteen years later, in 1982, they married. Their son, Griffen, was born in 1983, and their daughter, Sydney, was born in 1986.v
- Rick Perry grew up as a Methodist and attended the same church as President George W. Bush the Tarrytown United Methodist Church in Austin,. He currently attends the mega-church Lake Hills Church.s
- Despite his ties with some radical evangelical Christian figures who are openly antagonistic to Islam, Perry is a friend of the Aga Khan, the religious leader of a sect of Shia Islam. Perry has agreed to institute a far-reaching program to educate Texas school children about Islam.g
- Rick Perry is an Eagle Scout and lifetime member of the American Legion Post #75.a1
- Perry graduated with a BS in animal science from Texas A&M in 1972 with a 2.5 GPA. Perry was barred from running for student office until his senior year because of scholastic probation.i
- Rick Perry is a fifth-generation Texan and Texas’ 47th governor. He is the first Texas A&M graduate to become the governor of Texas.a1
One of Perry’s nickname was “Crotch”
- Rick Perry’s nickname in the 1980s was “Crotch” because in the 1980s he wore tight jeans and, according to the Daily Beast, he “adjusted himself often.”t
- Perry has been criticized for Texas’ low high school graduation rates and for having one of the highest poverty rates in the country.k
- Under Perry’s watch, Texas tied with Mississippi for the highest percentage of workers in minimum-wage jobs. Additionally, 26% of Texans have no health insurance, which is the highest percentage of medically uninsured residents of any state.k
- In May 2010, Rick Perry signed into law that a woman seeking an abortion in Texas must first get a sonogram and that a doctor must describe the size of the embryo or fetus as well as its organs and limbs. In cases of rape, incest, or serious fetal abnormalities, a woman could decline to hear the description of the sonogram.b1
- Rick Perry had a vasectomy, which was performed by his father-in-law.t
- According to Perry, his mother made many of clothes when he was younger and was even making his underwear when he arrived at Texas A&M.h
- Perry has raised eyebrows for criticizing the federal government’s economic stimulus yet accepting $12 billion in stimulus money in the 2009 legislative session.o
- After a Tea Party rally on Tax Day 2009, Perry hinted that Texas could viably secede from the United States. However, after people at the rally began to shout “secede!”, he backtracked and said, “We’ve got a great union; there’s absolutely no reason to dissolve it.”o
- Rick Perry jogs with a laser-sighted .380 Ruger loaded with hollow bullets because he is afraid of snakes. In 2010, he shot and killed a coyote that tried to attack his Labrador Retriever.t
Texas leads the nation in minimum-wage jobs
- In the past two years, under Perry’s watch, Texas created 37% of America’s new jobs. However, some critics point out that many of these were minimum-wage jobs.d
- Both George W. Bush and Rick Perry were “yell leaders” (similar to male cheer leaders) at their respective universities. That makes two consecutive Texas governors who were yell leaders at their schools.i
- At Texas A&M, Perry was a member of the Corps of Cadets. After graduating in 1972, he became a captain in the Air Force. After he left the military in1977, he joined his father’s cotton farming business.i
- In 2002, Perry vetoed a ban on the execution of mentally handicapped inmates.q
- In 2011, Rick Perry hosted a prayer-and-fasting event titled “The Response: A Call to Prayer for a Nation in Crisis” to encourage Americans to pray to “heal a nation that has not honored God in our successes or humbly called on Him in our struggles.”m
- Rick Perry drew criticism when in 1993 he wrote a letter praising Hillary Clinton’s health care reform efforts as “most commendable.”y
- Rick Perry nominated Texas’ first Latina justice.a1
- While in college, Perry once placed M-80 firecrackers in a toilet as a prank. He also placed live chickens in a fellow student’s closet over Christmas break.i
- Governor Perry signed an official proclamation that designated three days in April 2011 for the state of Texas to pray for rain.t
- Rick Perry was initially a Democrat but switched to the Republican Party in 1989. The year before he converted, he served as Texas chairman for then-presidential candidate Al Gore.y
- Rick Perry has said that his Christian faith requires that he support Israel. He holds that President Obama’s approach to the Middle East is “naïve and arrogant, misguided and dangerous.”z
- In 2001, Rick Perry signed the Texas version of the Dream Act that allowed children of illegal immigration access to in-state tuition.n
- Perry supported the Trans-Texas Corridor, a toll road that would have meant the government appropriation of an estimated 81,000 acres of rural land. Conservative opposition to the government seizing that much land using eminent domain put an end to the road.n
- Rick Perry proposed ending the lifetime tenure for federal judges by amending Article III Section I. He also has proposed that Congress should have the power to override Supreme Court decisions with a two-thirds vote.l
- Rick Perry has suggested repealing the Sixteenth Amendment, which would abolish federal income tax. He argues that the Sixteenth Amendment is the “great milestone on the road to serfdom.”l
- Perry proposed repealing the Seventeenth Amendment, which would end the direct election of senators and instead allow state legislators the power to appoint the members of Senate.l
Perry claims Social Security and Medicare are unconstitutional
- Rick Perry once argued that Social Security was a “Ponzi scheme” and that both it and Medicare were unconstitutional.b
- Rick Perry has argued that the federal Constitution should define marriage as between one woman and one man in all 50 states. He is in favor of a constitutional amendment that would permanently ban gay marriage throughout the country and overturn any state laws that define marriage beyond one woman/one man.l
- In 2006, Rick Perry argued that non-Christians would be condemned to hell.j
- In 2007, Rick Perry signed an executive order that required all Texas sixth-grade girls be vaccinated against the human papilloma virus (HPV), a sexually transmitted disease that can cause cervical cancer. The vaccine’s only manufacturer was a former Perry aide. While the order was ultimately blocked, it angered many conservatives.n
- Since 2001, Texas’ debt has grown faster than the U.S. government. Perry assumed office in December 2000.n
- At Texas A&M Perry rarely earned anything above a C in his courses. For example, he earned a C in U.S. History, a D in Shakespeare, a D in the Principles of Economics, a C in Gym, a D in Veterinary Anatomy, an F in a second course in Organic Chemistry, and a C in Animal Breeding. He received only two As while at A&M, one in World Military Systems and one in “Improv of Learning.”d
- Under Rick Perry, 235 people were executed in Texas, including Cameron Todd Willingham, who many believe was an innocent man.r,u
- Before the presidential campaign, Perry called for constitutional amendments that banned same-sex marriage and abortion, which some pundits saw as direct opposition to his belief that the federal government should stay out of states’ business.l
- Rick Perry created controversy when he called Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke “treasonous” if he printed more money and that the only reason he would do it is to help Obama win the presidency.w
Perry does not believe in manmade global warming
- In his book Fed Up! Perry argues that global warming is a hoax created by scientists who have manipulated data for money.p
- In the 2011 GOP debate, Perry claimed that he was “vocal” in opposing George W. Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” plan for education. However, in 2002, he supported the bill when it passed.a
- Perry had pushed for extensive limits on lawsuits. He has particularly emphasized curbing medical malpractice suits, which has attracted doctors to Texas.c
- Perry’s salary as Texas governor is $150,000 per year. His current four-year term ends in January 2015.x
- Rick Perry views American statesman, politician, and soldier, Sam Houston (1793-1863) as the greatest leader in American history.f
- Craig McDonald, director of Texans for Public Justice, reports that Perry is the most successful fund-raiser in the history of Texas politics, and that “he may be the best in the country.”e
-- Posted October 3, 2011
a Allen, Michael. “Governor Rick Perry Supported ‘No Child Left Behind’ before He Opposed It.” Opposing Views. September 23, 2011. Accessed: September 25, 2011.
b Begala, Paul. “Rick Perry’s Ruthless Drive to Win.” The Daily Beast. August 13, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
c Blumenthal, Ralph. “More Doctors in Texas After Medical Malpractice Caps.” The New York Times. October 5, 2007. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
d Cherkis, Jason. “Rick Perry’s College Transcript: A Lot of Cs and Ds.” Huffington Post. August 5, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
e Confessore, Nicholas. “Money No Obstacle as Perry Joins GOP Race.” The New York Times. August 12, 2011. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
f Draper, Robert. “It’s Just a Texas-Governor Thing.” The New York Times. December 2, 2009. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
g Elliot, Justin. “Rick Perry: The pro-Shariah Candidate?” Salon.com August 10, 2011. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
h “From a Place Called Paint Creek.” RickPerry.org. 2011. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
i Hooks, Chris. “Texas A&M Years Launched Perry—and a Rivalry.” Texas Tribune. August 2, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
j Hoppe, Christy. “Perry Believes Non-Christians Doomed.” The Dallas Morning News. November 6, 2006. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
k Meyerson, Harold. “The Sad Facts behind Rick Perry’s Texas Miracle.” The Washington Post. August 16, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
l Moody, Chris. “Seven Ways Rick Perry Wants to Change the Constitution.” Yahoo!News. August 19, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
m Montopoll, Brian. “Rick Perry Hosting Event for America ‘in Crisis.’” CBS News. June 6, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
n ----. “The Skeletons in Rick Perry’s Closet.” CBS News. July 25, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
o Oberg, Ted. “Taking a Look at Gov. Perry’s Pitfalls.” ABC Local News. September 8, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
p Petri, Alexandra. “Rick Perry, Global Warming and Those Durn Scientists.” The Washington Post. August 17, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
q “Rick Perry on Crime.” On the Issues. August 15, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
r Saenz, Arlette. “Rick Perry 2012: Republican Presidential Candidate.” ABC News. September 2011. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
s Sanders, Joshunda. “Candidates Mirror Population in Attending More than One Church.” Statesman. October 30, 2010. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
t Sehgal, Ujala. “Top Six Rick Perry Facts.” National Journal. August 15, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
u “Sex Ad Hurts Ron Paul More Than Rick Perry.” U.S. News. August 19, 2011. Accessed: September 25, 2011.
v Sontag, Deborah. “Paint Creek, the Town Perry Left Behind.” The New York Times. September 18, 2011. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
w Stromberg, Stephen. “Perry: People Who Disagree with Me Are ‘Treasonous.’” Washington Post. August 16, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
x “Tax Returns Show Texas Rick Perry Supplemented Salary with Profitable Deals.” Hays County Democratic Party. September 16, 2011. Accessed: September 30, 2011.
y “Tea Party Faithful Wonder If Rick Perry Walks the Talk.” Accuracy in Media. August 10, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
z Tenety, Elizabeth. “Rick Perry: ‘As a Christian . . . I Stand with Israel.” Washington Post. September 20, 2011. Accessed: September 25, 2011.
a1 “Texas Governor Rick Perry.” Office of the Governor Rick Perry. Accessed: September 12, 2011.
b1 “Texas Sonogram Abortion Law Signed by Rick Perry.” Huffington Post. May 15, 2011. Accessed: September 12, 2011.