Crony Capitalism? Sorry, We've Only Got That In Blue
October 10, 2011

Recently, I asked whether Republican voters would care enough about the crony capitalism evident in Rick Perry's Texas to vote against him. For Tea Party conservatives to do so, I suggested, would mean confronting the disconnect between their populist rhetoric and their willingness, until now, to tolerate Republican coziness with big business. Commenter "Rayward" made another good point to explain why the crony capitalism charge may not take against Perry: "Crony capitalism has no sting anymore because Republicans have neutered the term by calling Obama a crony capitalist.

How Cain Soared and Perry Flopped at the Values Voter Summit
October 08, 2011

[Guest post by Simon van Zuylen-Wood]  “I came as a Perry fan,” 42-year-old defense consultant David Hebert told me as he stood in a long line of Values Voter Summit attendees waiting to get their copies of This Is Herman Cain! autographed. “It would have taken a lot to shake me. But I changed my mind with that speech.” Judging from the frenzied hooting and high-five-your-neighbor reaction to Cain’s speech Friday afternoon, he was not the only one.

A Texas-Sized Campaign Kitty
October 05, 2011

The political class is reacting with some astonishment to the Perry campaign's announcement that it raised $17 million in the third quarter (actually, in barely more than half the quarter, given Perry's late entry.) This most impressive sum conflicts with the boom and bust story line that had settled on Perry, after his surge to the front of the pack and more recent stumbles. But really, no one should have been surprised by this figure. As I describe in my new cover story in the magazine, raising money is what Perry does better than just about anyone.

Perry's Hunting Camp and DC's Glass House
October 04, 2011

I can't defend Rick Perry's (or his father's) apparent slowness to paint over the word "Niggerhead" on a rock by the entrance of a West Texas hunting camp that his family leased. It's deplorable, and it doesn't speak well for his racial sensitivity.

This Was Christie’s One Shot to Become President—And He Missed It
October 04, 2011

And so it ends—not with a bang, but a wimp-out. Chris Christie, who had become the most courted reluctant Republican since Dwight Eisenhower, permanently closed the door Tuesday afternoon on a 2012 White House run: “Now is not my time. I have a commitment to New Jersey that I just can’t abandon.” A self-described “regular guy from New Jersey,” Christie exudes more self-confidence than even Rick Perry out shooting coyotes.

Could This Be Sarah Palin’s Moment?
October 04, 2011

We’re at a very strange juncture in the 2012 presidential contest. Rick Perry continues to struggle, as Mitt Romney savagely exploits his offensive-to-conservatives position on immigration and the Texan deals with new, potentially damaging revelations of a racially insensitive name for a hunting camp rented by his family. But Romney’s not benefitting much in the polls, and he remains a persona non grata to many conservatives.

Rick Perry And The Map Worth A Thousand Words
October 03, 2011

Amid all the talk today about what sort of place Rick Perry comes from—and how much people there clung to their appellation of a certain piece of land —it's worth calling attention to what has to be one of the most telling and eye-opening maps of contemporary voting behavior. In 2004, George W. Bush beat John Kerry with 50.7 percent of the vote. Four years later, Barack Obama beat John McCain with nearly 53 percent of the vote.

“He’s Just Not Like That”
October 03, 2011

Something about Rick Perry seems to inspire conversation that is awfully elemental. First, he was praying for rain. Then there were the Texas wildfires last month, and the question of whether or not they were related to the man-made climate change in which Perry does not believe. And now comes the rock. We'll leave it to others to litigate just exactly when a certain offensive word was visible on the boulder at the entrance to piece of land that Perry and his father starting leasing as a hunting ranch starting in the 1980s.

Tonight: Watch TNR's Alec MacGillis on MSNBC at 8 PM Eastern
September 30, 2011

After traveling to Texas and delving deep into Rick Perry’s history, TNR’s Alec MacGillis has written what we think is the definitive profile of the Texas governor. And tonight, you can hear him tell even more of the story.

A Heartfelt Apology To The Club For Growth
September 30, 2011

Earlier this week, I posed what I saw as a crucial question hanging over Rick Perry's prospects in the primary: whether Republican voters nationally would show more concern than Texas voters have about the pay for play, corporate-welfare aura that has enveloped Perry's tenure as govenror.