Last year Rick Perry won the Turkey Politician of the Year award for his prissy response to Mayor Bill White's cursing incident during Ike; this year he takes the whole turkey enchilada for a stunningly entertaining and embarrassing string of events that brought applause from the tea-bag minority of the country and derision from the rest.
Perry is the longest-serving governor in the state's history; the strange thing is that people don't seem to like him much. He won his last re-election with 39 percent of the vote, which is about what George McGovern managed to scare up against Richard Nixon in 1972. ...
Sure, Perry entertained us with episodes such as firing a state board of forensics experts who dared to question whether he had wrongly executed a man, or suddenly setting aside, the moment he had a viable primary opponent, his long-standing, quixotic attempt to build a massive superhighway wanted by absolutely no one who wasn't directly getting a big paycheck from it, but it was his Tea-Bag Tango that set him apart from the other Turkeys of 2009.
Their summary of his winning efforts ...
He boldly rejected federal stimulus money, then later quietly took it. "It's nothing out of the ordinary," he said after making his money grab. Perry also — while ranting loudly about federal interference with the states — found no trouble asking for funds to battle swine flu or "protect the borders."
He told a Midland crowd that the Obama administration was taking illegal immigrants arrested in Arizona and dumping them off in Presidio. "This is a city that does not have the social services, does not have the law enforcement, does not have the ability in any form or fashion to handle that type of influx of people," Perry said. "Do the math on that. In a year period of time, we're talking 28,000 people that are going to be turned loose on our border." ... In the same speech, he said Obama was "hell-bent toward taking America towards a socialist country," which is somewhat close to being in English, but which also got him a nice big red headline on the Drudge Report and lots of face time on Fox, which Perry gleefully Twittered about.
He jumped on the bandwagon about Obama's speech to schoolkids. Remember that run of idiocy? Obama, like presidents before him, was going to give a televised speech to students. ... Here's the lead from an Associated Press story: "Austin — Gov. Rick Perry called President Barack Obama's plan to speak to the nation's school children about the importance of education 'disturbing,' but he said he would not advise parents to keep their children home from school that day despite calls to do so from angry critics."
Anytime you can call a "plan to speak to the nation's school children about the importance of education" disturbing, you've accomplished something.
Go read all the snarky goodness.