What You Can Learn About Rick Perry From His Interview in Parade Magazine

PARADE_Rick_Perry.jpg
Rick Perry gave an interview to Parade Magazine (this week's issue was, yet again, almost completely devoid of any coverage on parades or the parade-attending lifestyle) and people are needling him for comments he made about Barack Obama's birth certificate. He told the interviewer that he has "no reason to think otherwise" that Obama is an American citizen, but refused to say he definitively believes the birth certificate the Obama administration released is real. "I had dinner with Donald Trump the other night," Perry said, "He doesn't think it's real."

Besides the fact that Perry still has doubts about Obama's birth certificate and that Trump has the Texan's ear, what else can we learn from his interview in Parade?

He tried to steal Winston Churchill's head:
When the Obama administration moved into the White House, they removed a bust of Winston Churchill (causing a little stir across the pond). They replaced it with a bust of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and the British Embassy received the Churchill likeness. Perry wanted it, so he asked them for it. "I told them I've got busts of George Washington, Sam Houston, Abraham Lincoln, and Ronald Reagan," he said, striving for that fifth disembodied head that would complete the treasured white guy quintet.

He invites people from upstate New York to come to Texas and have their puppies eaten by coyotes:
While telling the story of how, while jogging, he shot and killed a coyote to protect his daughter's dog, Perry said, "One guy from upstate New York said [it couldn't have happened because] 'coyotes would run away.' Come to Austin. I'll show you coyotes that will come and get in your backyard and eat your little puppy."

He no longer jogs:
He says he swims instead, which begs the obvious question: how does he waterproof his gun? Is it in a baggie?

He likes New York, but he loves Disney Presents Rudy Giuliani's New York Adventure Park Bar & Grill:
"It's a beautiful and wonderful place," he says, "I came here in 1972, and it was a very dark and ominous and probably unsafe place. I didn't come back for 20-plus years. When I came back, it was really changed, and I give my tip of the hat to Rudy Giuliani for that. "

Were it not for a freak horse-unloading accident, he'd be a struggling pianist, just trying to make it in this big, wide world:
"I played piano for seven years. But I broke my arm really bad unloading horses when I was 16, so I had to stop. Had it not been for the accident, I'd probably be playing piano in a little bar here in New York."

He calls Trump, "The Donald":
"I'd certainly like to have the Donald's support. He is a job-creating machine," Perry said, apparently unaware of Trump's catchphrase.

He strongly supports a plan that sounds suspiciously like "big government," but he said it so that's obviously not the case:
"If we don't have policies in place, tax-wise, regulatory-wise, to take the burden off the small business men and women in this country and give them confidence that there is going to be an environment where they can risk their capital and have a return on the investment, then America is going to be in trouble."

His favorite color is blue:
He wasn't asked, but he offered this information anyway.

He still thinks Social Security is a Ponzi scheme:
For "young and mid-career people," at least.

He voted for Jimmy Carter, and when he thinks about this he calls upon a divine fish for strength:
"In 1976, I voted for Jimmy Carter, because I was in the air force, and I came from an agricultural family. A peanut farmer from Georgia had to be better than anyone else on the Democrats' side. He was the last Democrat I voted for for president--in fact the only Democratic -president I ever voted for. Holy mackerel, what a mistake."

He has the musical taste of a college freshman at Texas A&M who loves to get baked and just think:
He lists Beethoven, Clay Walker, and Pink Floyd as what is currently on his iPod.

He zings research-backed texts about global warning:
When asked if he read An Inconvenient Truth, Perry responded, "No. I generally don't watch or read a lot of fiction."

Rick Perry Hates to Lose [Parade]

[@nickgreene][ngreene@villagevoice.com]


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Yuan Yi Peng
Yuan Yi Peng

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