Also on that Republican Governors Association conference call, South Carolina governor Mark Sanford mentioned his interest in yesterday’s Tea Party protests.
“When you look at what happened yesterday in these Tea Parties, there’s something going on out there that reflects this period of economic angst,” Sanford said. “I was up until 12:30 last night, watching coverage of these various parties. So if you look at these issues not just separately [referring to Jeb Bush’s recommended issue agenda of energy, budget, education, health care and the economy], they’re all pocketbook issues. I think that will give Republican governors a leg up in this cycle.”
At least twice on the conference call, reporters asked Sanford and Mississippi governor Haley Barbour about comments by Texas governor Rick Perry at a Tea Party rally yesterday, that appeared to suggest he saw secession from the union as an option.
“Did he talk about succeeding or seceding?” Barbour asked with a laugh. “We want to see everyone suc-ceed.”
“What he was talking about was Tenth Amendment and legitimate issues of unfunded mandates,” Sanford said. He added later that it was “preposterous” to characterize Perry as a secessionist when “he’s out there talking about Tenth Amendment, which is a very valid point to bring up, considering the amount and cost of unfunded mandates.”