Entries in Rick Perry (6)


Rick Perry Says Mitt Romney’s Bain Record Could Be a ‘Fatal Flaw’

ABC News(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Texas governor and Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry calls his rival Mitt Romney’s work at Bain Capital a potentially “fatal flaw” which could imperil Republican chances to win back the White House in November.

Perry, who is trailing badly in the polls, spent the week attacking Romney as a “vulture capitalist,” whose work at Bain allowed him to reap huge profits by dismantling companies and laying off workers.

Perry’s criticism has sparked a backlash by some prominent Republicans.  Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani denounced the attacks as “ignorant and dumb.”  Fox News host Sean Hannity compared them to the rhetoric of Occupy Wall Street.  And influential Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., warned that Perry’s charge “really gives the Democrats a lot of fodder.”

Sunday morning, Perry defended himself to George Stephanopoulos.

“This is not something that we knew wasn’t coming up,” Perry said on “This Week.”  “It’s better to be talking about it here in January in South Carolina than it is in September and October with a nominee.  So if it’s a fatal flaw, then we need to talk about it now.”

Perry said he’s not ready to buy into Romney’s claim that he created more than 100,000 jobs while at Bain, saying, “I think the question is out there and it’s a good conversation to have.  We’re going to get tested by Obama and his group, so you better have all of these answers done early.  No surprises in September and October.”

Perry, once considered a strong contender for the Republican nomination, placed a disappointing fifth in the Iowa caucuses.  That night, he told supporters he was heading home to Texas to “reassess” his campaign.  Many thought he would give up the fight, but Perry quickly returned to the trail.  He has invested heavily in South Carolina, the first primary in the South, which takes place on Saturday.

When I asked him if he’d drop out if he fails to finish first or second in the Palmetto State, Perry said: “We’ll make that decision on Saturday.  Our intention is to win South Carolina and go forward from there.  But to try to plan your campaign months in advance, I think is a little bit of a stretch.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Presidential Candidates' Homes Range from Modest to Many

Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Though they are all vying to live in the White House, the GOP presidential contenders all have charming and sometimes lavish homes to tide them over.  Even the current commander-in-chief still has a multi-million dollar Georgian revival mansion in Illinois -- just in case.

From a Washington, D.C., townhouse to a tony mini-mansion, here are the houses that the seven rivals currently call home.  That is, until or if one of them starts having mail forwarded to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Newt Gingrich -- McLean, Va.
Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker and U.S. Congressman from Georgia, purchased his home in McLean, Va., for $995,000 in 2000.  It has 5,206 square feet and features a master bathroom with a marble floor and a chandelier.

Jon Huntsman -- Washington, D.C.
If Jon Huntsman's home looks familiar, it's because it was where the contestants of Bravo's Top Chef resided during Season 7.  The former Utah governor and ambassador to China owns a five-bedroom townhouse in Washington, D.C.  The house was sold for $3.6 million in June 2010, according to public records.

Ron Paul -- Lake Jackson, Texas
Texas Rep. Ron Paul's four-bedroom ranch house in Lake Jackson has been on the market since April 2011.  The Pauls have moved to a nearby home.  His site,, says the home has "four bedrooms, five bathrooms and is approximately 5,500 square feet in size."  The asking price is $325,000 while the median list price of homes in Lake Jackson is $139,800, according to Zillow.  The house has an in-ground swimming pool, two lofts and an office.

Rick Perry -- Austin, Texas
While waiting for renovations to the governor's mansion to be completed, Perry reportedly moved to a home in a gated community in Austin.  The house features five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, three dining rooms and a guest house.  The New York Times said the home, which has a balcony, is worth nearly $2 million and sits on three acres.  On, the home on Hickory Creek Drive is said to have 5,780 square feet.

Mitt Romney -- Wolfeboro, N.H.
The former Massachusetts governor and wealthiest GOP candidate owns the most real estate, including a property on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.  According to The New York Times, he recently sold his homes in Belmont, Mass. and Park City, Utah, but maintains another in La Jolla, Calif., for which he bought in 2008 for $12 million, Zillow reported.

Rick Santorum -- Great Falls, Va.
Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, lives in a Great Falls, Va., house that reportedly cost $2 million in 2007.

President Barack Obama -- Chicago, Ill.
President Obama reportedly paid $1.65 million for his home on the South Side of Chicago in June 2005, Zillow reports.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


New Hampshire Primary: Who's the Richest Candidate of Them All?

Nick M Do/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In Tuesday's New Hampshire primary, there are no poor people among the front-runners.

According to financial disclosures filed by the candidates, and to analyses of those filings by watchdog groups and news organizations, none of the six Republicans is worth much less than $2 million.  Some, including Romney and Huntsman, have a great deal more money.

As for the front-running Democrat on the ballot -- President Obama -- he, too, isn't anywhere near the so-called "99 percent": An analysis of the President's financial filings by assigns him a net worth of $2.8 million to $11.8 million. Forbes puts it at $10 million, with the potential for his earning "a lot more after office."

See the net worth of the candidates below:

1. Mitt Romney, Former Governor of Massachusetts

Romney's Aug. 12 financial disclosures for the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) show him to have a net worth of between $190 and $250 million, making him by far the richest of the Republicans still standing.  Successful in his own right as a venture capitalist, he didn't exactly pull himself up by his bootstraps: His father was president of General Motors.

2. Jon Huntsman, Former Ambassador to China, Former Governor of Utah
Huntsman's OGE filing for Aug. 30 shows a net worth somewhere between $16 million and $105 million.  Forbes estimates it as $50 million.  The candidate stands to become significantly richer when his father dies: The elder Huntsman, founder of global chemical manufacturer Huntsman Corp, has a net worth estimated by Forbes at over $900 million.

3. Newt Gingrich, Former Speaker of the House

Gingrich's prime money-making years began in 1999, after his resignation from Congress.  He started a profitable consulting practice, The Gingrich Group, which reportedly earned in excess of $1.6 million from contracts with mortgage giant Freddie Mac.  As a lecturer, he earned fees of up to $50,000 per talk.  His net worth, according to his Office of Government Ethics filing for July 14, is at least $6.7 million.

4. Rick Perry, Governor of Texas
Perry's net worth -- approximately $3 million -- includes a one-third interest in a ranch in Haskell, Texas, according to his Dec. 15 OGE filing.  Some of his wealth has come from lucrative deals with friends and supporters.

5. Ron Paul, Congressman from Texas
Watchdog group puts Paul's wealth at between $1.9 million and $5.2 million, making the diminutive doctor the 87th richest member of the House of Representatives.

6. Rick Santorum, Former Pennsylvania Senator
The former senator has a net worth of up to $2 million according to his Aug. 2 filing with the Office of Government Ethics.  He earned some of it working as a commentator for News Corp's Fox News, which paid him just under $240,000 in 2010 and the first six months of 2011.  He earned more than $330,000 as a consultant to Consul Energy in Pennsylvania and to two lobbying firms in Washington, D.C.

7. Barack Obama, President of the United States
The first couple's joint tax return shows income last year of $1.73 million, down from $5.5 million the year before, with much of it coming from sales of two of the president's books, Dreams From my Father and The Audacity of Hope. Citing financial records, Forbes pins President Obama's worth at $10 million. Like every former president, Obama has the potential for his earning a fortune in book deals and speaking engagement when he leave office -- whenever that may be.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Perry Labels Wall Street Bailout as ‘Greatest Act of Thievery’

ABC News(ELKDADER, Iowa) -- On Monday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry branded the Wall Street bailout as the, “greatest act of thievery in American history,” and criticized Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney for their support of TARP.

“There have been people on Wall Street that have been betting against America, and then we bailed them out, and there’s nothing right about that,” Perry told a crowd of around 50 people at Johnson’s Restaurant. “On Wall Street some people got rich. I mean literally, insanely rich, and they were betting against millions of homeowners with these subprime mortgages. Wall Street bailout was the single greatest act of thievery in American history. And Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney were for it.”

“That’s what insiders do,” Perry continued. “They take care of each other. They protect the moneyed interest and then they leave the tab to those of us in the middle class. They put Wall Street, K Street, which is where all the lobbyists live, ahead of Main Street. Washington’s wasteful spending’s wrong. It’s unjust, it’s got to stop and that’s the reason I offer myself as an outsider who will walk up there, who doesn’t have any connections with the folks on Wall Street or on K Street for that matter.”

Perry further described the nexus between Washington, D.C., and Wall Street as “a den of thieves” that leaves the American people to deal with “picking up the carnage.”

The Texas governor presented himself as the alternative to a culture of wasteful spending in Washington, D.C.

“We don’t have to choose this time between a Democrat spendaholic or a Republican spendaholic,” Perry said, noting that as governor of Texas he signed six balanced budgets.

“We shouldn’t have to settle for a candidate this time around that’s going to support bailouts or wasteful earmarks as some of those on the stage with me have, and we don’t have to resign ourselves to these gross abuses that we’ve seen from the standpoint of the permanent bureaucracy in the ruling class.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Rick Perry: ‘Almost Treasonous’ for Feds to Print More Money Pre-Election

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry capped off his first full day of campaigning in Iowa Monday by suggesting that if the Federal Reserve prints more money between now and November 2012 it would be akin to an act of treason.

“If this guy prints more money between now and the election,” Perry said, “I don’t know what y’all would do to him in Iowa, but we -- we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas. Printing more money to play politics at this particular time in American history is almost treacherous -- or treasonous in my opinion.”

He added, “We’ve already tried this. All it’s going to be doing is devaluing the dollar in your pocket and we cannot afford that. We have to learn the lessons of the past three years that they’ve been devastating. The President of the United States has conducted an experiment on the American economy for almost the last three years, and it has gone tragically wrong and we need to send him a clear message in November of 2012 that new leadership is coming.”

Perry, who officially entered the presidential race on Saturday, was responding to a question from a member of the audience at a backyard county Republican Party fundraiser who asked him what he would do with the Federal Reserve.

Perry initially said, “I’ll take a pass on the Federal Reserve right at the moment to be real honest with you,” before launching into his more pointed answer.

When asked in a follow-up interview whether Perry thought that the Federal Reserve was playing politics to try to help President Obama, he replied, “If they print more money between now and this election, I would suggest that’s exactly what’s going on.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Texas Gov. Rick Perry: Jobs Wizard?

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(AUSTIN, Texas) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry may have even more political ammunition if he decides to run in the 2012 presidential race. For the past two years, his state added half of the nation's 524,000 new payroll jobs, new data shows.

From June 2009 to June 2011, Texas added 261,700 jobs, or 49.9 percent of U.S. job growth since the 1.5-year recession ended, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Texas may have one of the few sweet spots when it comes to the sluggish recovery of jobs lost during the recession. In December 2008 alone, the country lost 524,000 jobs, according to the Labor Department. The national unemployment rate was 9.2 percent, compared with Texas at 8.2 percent.

But the factors contributing to the Lone Star State's job creation may have little to do with Perry, and its downside may not be fully realized, critics argue.

"Texas is quite a low-regulation state. It's cheaper to do business here than quite a few other states," Mine Yucel, senior economist and vice president with the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, said. "We're relatively lower wage. It doesn't mean our skilled workers are getting lower wages."

The oil and gas industries have boosted the state's economy as the price of oil has risen, Yucel said. The average price of regular gas was $2.35 in 2009, $2.78 in 2010 and is $3.56 so far this year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

The state has been able to diversify into other sectors, namely technology and financial services.

Political watchers wonder whether Perry will enter the 2012 presidential race, boasting of his jobs record, now that the Texas legislative session has closed.

But the Texas legislature, required by law to balance a budget created every two years, made significant cuts in education and other public services that may blemish the governor's record.

Daniel Hamermesh, an economics professor at the University of Texas at Austin, said public services in the state are "terrible" as a result of its lower taxes. He added that it is "nonsense" to say low taxes have contributed to job creation.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio