For weeks, months, nearly a year now, we have been hearing about the upcoming election of 2012. Many, many people, myself included, are of the strong opinion that Barack Obama is as vulnerable as any sitting President in our memory. Given his job performance, both on the foreign and domestic issues, up to and including the bull in the room, it’s the economy stupid, we think he can be beat. That optimism has been somewhat dampened by the lack of what we believe is a good and credible candidate from the Republican Party. Personally, I like Ron Paul, although some of his positions may seem to be a bit extreme. However, as I mentioned in my comment on Ted’s post from yesterday, Dr. Paul has about as much of a chance of winning the Republican nomination as I do. No disrespect to the Representative from Texas, but the Republican establishment has no intention of allowing him to become the nominee, and they will do everything in their power to make sure it doesn’t happen.
That leaves us with a field of candidates that many are not excited about. Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty, Herman Cain, etc. have yet to get my hackles up and entice me to support one or the other and thankfully, Donald Trump and Newt Gingrich seem to have fallen quietly by the wayside and out of the race. That leaves us with who might enter the race, which leads us to what seems to be the inevitable entrance of who some are simply calling the Texan. Governor Rick Perry is said to be ready to announce his candidacy in South Carolina on this coming Saturday and there are many people that I know of who are waiting in the wings, ready to jump on his bandwagon, the minute he makes his intentions known to the public.
I’ll be honest, Rick Perry is an enigma to me. He is on the record as being a strong social conservative, having signed several pieces of legislation that limits access to abortion, especially in the case of young girls. He is on the record as being against a strong central government, having authored a book entitled, “Fed Up! Our Fight to Save America from Washington”. He seems to truly believe in limited government. For the record, however, he also ran Al Gore’s presidential campaign in Texas in 1988. That’s right, Rick Perry was a Democrat until 1989, when he changed his party affiliation to run for Agriculture Commissioner of Texas. Does that mean he can’t be trusted to not return to his roots as a Democrat? I think not, but it should be duly noted.
Where the real reality of a Rick Perry presidential bid comes into play is his willingness to not hide his strong Christian faith. He makes no bones about the fact that he is a Christian, as was evidenced by last weekend’s prayer meeting in Houston. He openly asks for Christians to turn to God for the answers to the problems facing our nation. To be sure, I have no problem with this attitude, as I think it would be wise to do so. Having said that, I understand that many in this country are not Christians and do not believe in God and have no interest in a man or a woman who holds such strong beliefs as our President.
No doubt, Governor Perry would sweep the South, but he would also be facing the same kind of opposition as Mike Huckabee faced in 2008. Even though the former governor of Arkansas had bona fide credentials, he was dismissed by many, simply because he was such a strong Christian. I heard many who said they were fearful that a President Huckabee would force his religious beliefs down their throat. Given the fact that Perry has openly stated his opposition to the recognition of homosexual relationships and to abortion, I can already hear the cries of foul, if he enters the race, as expected.
I am also glad to see him support limiting our federal government and working for fiscal responsibility in our country. Given the problems we are facing, I think that is important. However, it is the social issues that concern me. Make no mistake, I am a Christian and I support Perry’s stance on many of these issues. I support the limitations he has placed on abortion, restricting access to the barbaric practice, especially for young girls. Please note here that I also support his fiscal responsibility as Governor. I think that is very important, especially considering how lacking Washington is in that regard. However, it is because of the positions he has taken on the social issues, such as abortion, that he will face his stiffest opposition from the liberals. This is one of their sacred cows and they will surely get up in arms at the thought of a Christian president limiting what they can accomplish in that regard. Opposition is also sure to come from some who lean more Libertarian in their beliefs. It remains to be seen if Rick Perry can navigate these treacherous waters to win the Republican nomination and possibly become the 45th President of the United States.
For more on Rick Perry, please visit The Reaganite Republican.