The American Conservative magazine tags Perry faux-conservatism:

Despite their malice, Rick Perry owes the antireligious bigots big time. They have helped turn someone with a mixed record on immigration and job creation into a Republican Right hero. Indeed, by mentioning his fervent faith at a prayer breakfast and by making it appear that he believes in creationism, Perry has enlisted the “anti-God squad” for his campaign. The more they scream, the better he does in hiding his identity as a Bush-look-alike, from the same state and with some of the same key policies as the former president. (Ruth Marcus in the Washington Post takes the opposite view, noting Perry’s recent rhetoric rather than his record. As late as 2008, however, Perry backed the very liberal Republican Giuliani for president.)

Many of the new jobs that Perry boasts of having brought to Texas were in the public sector; nonetheless, if one focuses on added jobs in the private sector, according to Michael Barone, one finds that Texas under its present governor wouldn’t finish in the top ten. Under Perry the state debt has more than doubled; and this may be related to his public sector approach to unemployment. Like Bush, Perry presents himself as a benefactor of publicly subsidized education. As Texas governor he expresses the hope that all high-school graduates will be able to attend a university for a cost of no more than $10,000 per year. Need we even wonder whether the state debt will be increased to pay for this favor? In foreign policy, Perry is also imitating his Republican predecessor in the governor’s mansion. This candidate has brought back Bush’s neoconservative advisor Douglas Feith, and he sounds like the former president in stating his vision for America’s role in building global democracy.

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