FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – As Governor Rick Perry begins his first week campaigning in Iowa as an official presidential candidates, North Texans are reacting to his announcement to run.
“There was no doubt in my mind he was presidential material,” said Tarrant County GOP Chairman Stephanie Klick as she reflected on hearing the Governor’s January inaugural address.
Klick said she wasn’t surprised by Perry’s announcement to run, but she was taken off guard by the immediate requests for yard signs since the campaign hasn’t given them any yet. In an attempt to meet demand, they used left over signs from his gubernatorial bid replacing the word Governor, with President.
One of the big issues for Republicans, Klick says, will be Perry pushing states’ rights to decide issues ahead of a personal moral stance on issues like gay marriage.
“It’s a colliding of principles, and how do you work that out?” Klick asked rhetorically. “Voters are going to have to decide whether the governor’s approach is the proper way.”
Long time Democrat campaign worker and former Tarrant County Democratic Party Chairman Art Brender says Perry’s record on economics in Texas needs deeper scrutiny. “This whole facade of what’s happened in Texas is really no different than what’s happening around the country,” Brender said. “We’re all in this together. Its a difficult time and its certainly not a time to be balancing the budget on the back of poor people or putting people out of work.”
Konni Burton, the vice-president for the Northeast Tarrant Tea Party, said Perry won’t have an automatic approval locally just because he’s Governor of Texas “He’s not necessarily a Tea Party favorite. “We welcome him into the race. All of us grass-roots conservatives will be vetting him just as we will all of the candidates.”