The Corner

Perry on Romney: ‘You Can’t Change From One Election to Another’

Asked about the apparent tension between himself and Mitt Romney in debates, Rick Perry hit hard at his GOP rival.

“You can’t change from one election to another,” Perry said about Romney. “I think in his own words, he says, listen, I need to say whatever I need to say for whatever office I’m running for.”

It was unclear what specific quote of Romney’s Perry was alluding to there.

“How do you change at the age of fifty or sixty positions on life, positions on guns, positions on traditional marriage,” Perry argued. “I mean, those aren’t minor issues. To change those at the age of 50 or 60 tells you all you need to know about that.”

He also said the debates themselves may have been a “mistake.”

“These debates are set up for nothing more than to tear down the candidates,” Perry remarked, noting the difficulty of cramming complicated topics into one-minute soundbites. “If there was a mistake made, it was probably ever doing one of the campaigns [debates] when all they’re interested in is stirring it up between the candidates instead of really talking about the issues that are important to the American people about how you going to get us back to work,” he said.

UPDATE: “Rick Perry is a desperate candidate who will say and do anything to prop up his sinking campaign,” e-mails Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul. “In trying to deflect attention away from having the same liberal in-state tuition policy for illegal immigrants as President Obama, he has resorted to repeated dishonesty, distortions, and fabrications about Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney is a conservative businessman who is focused on getting Americans back to work and reviving this economy.”


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Katrina TrinkoKatrina Trinko is a political reporter for National Review. Trinko is also a member of USA TODAY’S Board of Contributors, and her work has been published in various media outlets ...


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