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January 3, 2013 | 23 comments
Rick Perry has not been doing all that well in these debates, and he isn’t improving. His standing in the polls paints a target on his back, of course, but that just means the attacks are predictable, and he doesn’t seem all that well-prepared to counter them. To take one example, Perry could defend his opposition to a border fence by arguing, say, that fence-building would involve infringing on the rights of landowners along the border; instead he simply asserts that it’s unrealistic without explaining why.
A worse problem, perhaps, is that Perry seems to have a stamina deficit; he tends to score points early in the debate and then become lethargic to the point of incoherence later. It was kind of astounding to see him go after Mitt Romney’s record of flip-flops — which should be a pretty easy line of attack — and stammer and fumble so much that it the punch completely failed to connect. Romney, who has had more practice at this than anyone else, seemed practically Reaganesque by comparison (and objectively speaking, Romney is far from Reaganesque).
Debates aren’t everything, but they are something. As Jim says, relatively few voters are paying close attention this early, so it’s not as if tonight’s debate is going to be decisive. But in a few months the debates are going to start to matter more. If Perry doesn’t get better at this soon, it could be fatal to his candidacy.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?