Rick Perry: ‘A possibility for me’ to run in 2016

By Neal McNamara | April 29, 2014
Rick Perry

Buried under the raft of news stories on Monday about LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling was another sad Southern California tale: Toyota, the world’s largest auto manufacturer, said Monday that it would abandon its headquarters in the Golden State and move to Texas.

Toyota’s announcement was another coup for Gov. Rick Perry, whose cool financial leadership has kept Texas going strong even during the recession. Texas’ unemployment hit a high of 8.3 percent in February 2010, compared to California’s 12.4 percent that same month.

Perry spoke to host Michael Medved on Monday about the Toyota coup, and, in very frank terms, about whether he’ll run for president again in 2016.

Medved called the Toyota announcement “epic” because of how it affects the two most popular – and politically opposed – states in the country.

“At its real core, even past Texas, this is good for America,” Perry said. “That’s what’s so important from my perspective. It isn’t about Texas snagging this business – Toyota is going to be a more competitive manufacturer.”

The work that states like Texas – states whose governors are Republicans, like Ohio, Louisiana, North Carolina, and Florida – are doing to lower taxes for businesses and grow jobs exemplifies the 10th Amendment of the Constitution, Perry said. That’s because, without the harness of federal government, states can tailor laws to be more business friendly; and states that don’t keep pace fall behind, just like California did on Monday.

“The real labs of democracy are in the states,” Perry told Medved. “We need to leave all these issues, social issues and otherwise, to the states.”

Inevitably, Medved steered the conversation toward the presidency. After Perry told a wistful and detailed anecdote about famed Texas leader Sam Houston, he all but said he’s going to run again.

“I think some people who are listening to us now would be a little bit surprised,” Medved said, “if Rick Perry, who remembers all these details about Sam Houston, your greatest predecessor of the Lone Star state – let’s say if you were to consider running for the nation’s highest office again, and that’s not entirely inconceivable …”

“No, it’s not [inconceivable]” he interrupted Medved.

“I’ve told people it is a possibility for me. I don’t know yet what that’s going to be, but I want to give myself every opportunity to be prepared if in 2015 that is the decision we prayerfully make,” Perry explained.

(An aside: Perry was recently baptized in the same creek near Independence, Texas that Sam Houston was in 1854.)

LISTEN: MEDVED TALKS TO RICK PERRY ABOUT HIS PRESIDENTIAL PLANS

Perry reflected on his bid in 2012, saying that preparation is important – and not getting back surgery a few months before you run is even more important. If he does run in 2016, expect a more spry, thoughtful, and effective Rick Perry to emerge.

“Two things I learned from the 2012 bid: Don’t have major back surgery six weeks before you announce. The other is preparation. You can’t parachute into this. I don’t care what you’ve done you think might’ve prepared you for it. There’s a thoughtful preparation process you go through.

“No. 1, I’m very healthy now, and it’s a good thing,” Perry said.

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