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Rick Perry's Damage Control Strategy: Have a Sense of Humor
The Atlantic ^ | November 10, 2011 | Molly Ball

Posted on 11/10/2011 2:37:12 PM PST by Cincinatus' Wife

By facing the issue and joking about it, Perry frames his gaffe as a funny moment rather than a serious, and seriously stupid, one. He takes control of the discussion. Every minute he's on the air being interviewed about it is one more minute his moment isn't being replayed, one more minute some panel of pundits isn't fretfully analyzing its stupendous terribleness. By allowing his memory glitch to be the topic of discussion and owning up to it, he helps exhaust the subject.

Most of all, Perry is being humanized, albeit not in the way any politician would wish.

For all the talk about the Republican field's lack of a credible conservative to take on Mitt Romney, there's another, just as glaring void: the humanity gap. Romney's woodenness and lack of approachability are arguably just as much of an issue as his ideological heresies and lack of consistency. He's just not relatable. A little personality goes a long way in a politician -- just look at Herman Cain.

Perry's reputation in Texas is as a folksy charmer, but it's a persona he seems to have left back in Austin for most of this campaign. He's been stilted and spacey and unsure by turns, with flashes of a better politician occasionally showing through.

Now, though it may be too late, Perry is seizing the chance to show he's just like us. He, too, saw what happened on that stage and groaned. He, too, thought he looked awfully dumb. But in refusing to let it get him down, he can show forthrightness and sincerity, two traits voters are surely wishing they saw more of from this field of Republican candidates.

(Excerpt) Read more at theatlantic.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 5000dollarcandidate; 5000dollarstoplay; ammesty; amnestyperry; areyousmarterthan6yo; backtoaustin; borderinsecurity; byebyeperry; canthemanspeak; debatefail; debatingfordummies; gaffe; heartless; heartlessping; human; humor; keywordkooks; openborders; payforplay; perry2012; perryastroturfing; perryisajoke; perryscherries; perrysfangals; perrywinkles; rickperry; rickrino; rickromney; rino; rinorick; rinorickster; texastoast
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To: linn37
Princess Pelosi was gracious in my mind.

No Politician in Washington would dare call this dominex out!

51 posted on 11/10/2011 3:58:53 PM PST by not2worry
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To: CharlesWayneCT

Newt can’t be expected to do everyone’s homework!


52 posted on 11/10/2011 4:01:10 PM PST by linn37
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

It’s getting difficult to discern if your devotion to Perry is tenacity or lunacy.


53 posted on 11/10/2011 4:02:15 PM PST by edpc (Wilby 2012)
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To: Verginius Rufus
Between Newt and Cain I believe Cain is the better candidate to beat Obama.

Newt just doesn't have the charisma and plain talking abilities that come naturally to Cain.

I do think that a Cain/Newt Ticket would be fantastic.

54 posted on 11/10/2011 4:02:55 PM PST by not2worry
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To: JDW11235; indylindy

Perry’s more articulate in Spanish........LOL.


55 posted on 11/10/2011 4:05:31 PM PST by Liz
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To: Puddleglum
It was more than just a muffed line.

Perry deserves criticism for jumping out there and then forgetting a major part of his platform, and then fumbling around and forgetting even more of his platform, but....

People should be more critical of Perry's ideas, such as his proposal in the CNN interview last week where he pushed for illegal immigrants ("Criminals") to get work visas to allow them to cross back and forth between countries. That should have dominated discussion of Perry this week, and I'm disappointed that it wasn't brought up at the debate, since it would have an effect on the economy.
56 posted on 11/10/2011 4:05:47 PM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: rockabyebaby

“Wonder what he’d sound like answering that 3am phone call?”

I suspect he’d have to get back with you. In about a week.


57 posted on 11/10/2011 4:06:52 PM PST by RKBA Democrat (Cain & Gingrich 2012..theres plenty of work to be done!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I don’t understand the intense animosity toward Perry, that so many freepers express. Why is a conservative, pro-life governor of Texas treated with contempt in these forums? If I were to take a typical anti-Perry post and cut-paste it to a Cain thread, changing just the name (from Perry to Cain) I’d be banned in a hartbeest.


58 posted on 11/10/2011 4:08:03 PM PST by Lady Lucky
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To: Liz

Well, I’ve certainly heard non native English speakers do a better job. :-)


59 posted on 11/10/2011 4:08:47 PM PST by JDW11235 (I think I got it now!)
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To: hellbender
What happened to Perry in the debate has happened to people of high intelligence many times. It’s not a sign of stupidity. It could be caused by anxiety (aggravated by being bashed for prior poor performance in previous debates)

Good God, I hope it was not something as simple as anxiety - this man is running for the most powerful position in the world, a responsibility that entails quick decisions under stressful circumstances. I'd rather just think he doesn't practice all that much or is just not committed to it.

We could do better, but we could do worse.

This is true. If Perry managed to come back somehow, the majority of FReepers would vote for him over Obama. The only way we aren't going to support the GOP candidate is if it's Romney.
60 posted on 11/10/2011 4:10:45 PM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: Lady Lucky

Do conservatives rule by executive order? DO they subsidize illegals? Perry does both. Oh yeah, he’s a public liar, too, as he said he wouldn’t run for another office, and would finish his term, when he ran in 2010. Life long politicians are a big problem, they make sure they’re always in an office and running for another.


61 posted on 11/10/2011 4:11:19 PM PST by JDW11235 (I think I got it now!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
“The only thing that ever consoles man for the stupid things he does is the praise he always gives himself for doing them.”
~Oscar Wilde
62 posted on 11/10/2011 4:11:26 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: Lady Lucky

“I don’t understand the intense animosity toward Perry, that so many freepers express. Why is a conservative, pro-life governor of Texas treated with contempt in these forums?”

Because we’re heartless.


63 posted on 11/10/2011 4:12:21 PM PST by RKBA Democrat (Cain & Gingrich 2012..theres plenty of work to be done!)
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To: af_vet_rr

“but.... People should be more critical of Perry’s ideas.”

Some of us are both. We don’t like either the message, nor the man, based upon his actions.


64 posted on 11/10/2011 4:13:20 PM PST by JDW11235 (I think I got it now!)
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To: indylindy

lol!


65 posted on 11/10/2011 4:13:24 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: RKBA Democrat

I have yet to hear something that Rick Perry is constitutionally conservative on. Not one thing.


66 posted on 11/10/2011 4:14:52 PM PST by JDW11235 (I think I got it now!)
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To: af_vet_rr

Being President “entails quick decisions under stressful circumstances”? That’s a common belief which I find to be untrue, except perhaps in times of nuclear attack. We are not electing a field military commander. Frankly, I would prefer a leader who thinks things through, consults with others, and then makes a decision to someone who is slick and glib like Romney and Gingrich. Some people bashed Cain for not giving an instant answer about something but saying he would call together experts and listen to them, which is in fact how Cain operated as a business executive, and the way other executives work. Would you rather have someone who ignored all his advisors and acted expert, although he was a fool...kind of like Adolf Hitler?


67 posted on 11/10/2011 4:19:21 PM PST by hellbender
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To: Lady Lucky

“I don’t understand the intense animosity toward Perry ....”

Illegal immigration and crony capitalism (aka pay to play schemes).


68 posted on 11/10/2011 4:20:32 PM PST by bwc2221
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To: Lady Lucky
I don’t understand the intense animosity toward Perry, that so many freepers express.

Perry is not seen as conservative.

Gardasil
TTC
Instate tuition for ILLEGAL aliens
Saying conservatives 'have no heart'
Calling conservatives racists
Opposing a border fence
Opposing AZ's SB1070
Did not agree with the bailouts but managed the Texas budget using bailout money

That's just a few reasons why conservatives in this conservative forum hold such animosity toward La Raza Rick Perry.

69 posted on 11/10/2011 4:21:20 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: South40

You forgot to add that Texans will have to have a picture ID to vote after Jan 1 2012.

Oh wait that doesn’t fit with your “he not a conservative” meme.


70 posted on 11/10/2011 4:26:49 PM PST by Ditter
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To: Ditter
So La Raza Rick did do some conservative things; that doesn't impress me. It's all he did that screams he is not a conservative that so many, myself included, just can't seem to get past.

But don't let that stop you; continue cheering for the loser all the way up until the day he drops out. That day should be coming soon.

71 posted on 11/10/2011 4:38:37 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: not2worry

Between Newt and Cain I believe Newt is the candidate who could actually perform the job of President and do it successfully. Which is the only reason I don’t support Cain.


72 posted on 11/10/2011 4:42:07 PM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: hellbender
For the sake of argument, we'll say that the President won't need to make quick decisions.

Earlier today, I watched Perry on a couple of different morning shows be pushed around by the media. Is that Presidential behavior? To allow the media to push you around? Perry kept wanting to talk about his campaign, the commentators wanted to talk about last night's mistake, and several times he failed to take control of the situation.

You watched the debate last night, you saw Gingrich take control of the narrative when the moderators were screwing with him, and we've seen it before. We've seen Cain take over the narrative - hell he did it on The View which is a much more hostile show to Conservatives than anything Perry has been on. We saw Romney and Perry allow themselves to be goaded into playground tussle by moderators that left both looking foolish while Gingrich and Cain and a few of the others stayed out of it.

I can't forgive Perry on his views on illegals, especially after the crap he was pushing last week about work visas for criminals to move back and forth between countries, but I could vote for him if he somehow came back and won the primaries. But let me tell ya, I'd be cringing when I did it, because I know that if he were to go up against Obama, it would not be pretty.

This ain't 2010 where he can refuse to debate the Democrat and get away with it.
73 posted on 11/10/2011 4:57:55 PM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: JDW11235

Thats okay, JDW. I was just givin’ a fellow Freeper a hard time. You should have seen my first and only Vanity. It was in ‘08 and I was a wreck about the election and Hussein.

So I verbally spewed and all my sentences ran together and didn’t make sense. A Freeper edited my rant, added paragraphs, and make it look more sane. :-)


74 posted on 11/10/2011 5:01:12 PM PST by Mountain Mary (I'll take a Godfather's pizza with the works!)
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To: South40

Perry did plenty of conservative things or I would not have voted for him for gov. I am not married to him or to any of the candidates. I did that with Fred Thompson and he waited for my check to clear and dropped out. I said I would never pick a candidate early again and I haven’t but to say that Perry is not a conservative is just dumb.


75 posted on 11/10/2011 5:02:49 PM PST by Ditter
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I’ve come to like Perry and wish him well but he’s not going to be POTUS ever.


76 posted on 11/10/2011 5:02:57 PM PST by jwalsh07
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To: af_vet_rr
Earlier today, I watched Perry on a couple of different morning shows be pushed around by the media. Is that Presidential behavior?

Well, that's pretty much how G. W. Bush behaved. (Not that I approve).

Being President is very different from being good in these phony debates, or impressing us in the conservative base by telling off the MSM, as Gingrich is. Gingrich seems smart at first, but he has a fatal weakness for bad but fashionable ideas, like "future shock", AGW, etc. The Republicans in Congress actually had to oust him from the Speakership. I do not trust him. He has real talent which can be used by the cause, however.

77 posted on 11/10/2011 5:05:43 PM PST by hellbender
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To: Iron Munro

The Perry campaign is a dead horse.

It’s time for him to get off.

.


78 posted on 11/10/2011 5:11:03 PM PST by bobk333
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To: CharlesWayneCT
Between Newt and Cain I believe Newt is the candidate who could actually perform the job of President and do it successfully.

Newt can speak to issues in a more professorial, academic way.

Cain can manage an organization and execute.

.

79 posted on 11/10/2011 5:13:23 PM PST by bobk333
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To: JaguarXKE
What else could he do?

The answer is quite obvious. I have been generally supportive of Rick Perry. Cain has been my no 1 and Perry has been my no 2. After watching Perry's "Gerald Ford" moment I think Perry needs to withdraw.

80 posted on 11/10/2011 5:14:39 PM PST by plain talk
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To: Ditter

To say La Raza Rick Perry is a conservative while ignoring his liberal record is dumb.


81 posted on 11/10/2011 5:52:26 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: South40

You ignore his conservative record and that is dumb. They all have warts some more some less. I’ll vote for the Republican whoever it turns out to be. Texas votes late in the primaries and it is usually all over and decided by then. I never see anything that you post other than bashing Perry, your candidate is who again?


82 posted on 11/10/2011 6:00:01 PM PST by Ditter
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To: Ditter
I'm not ignoring it, I've considered it and his liberal leaning outweigh it.

I'm not the only conservative who thinks so either. The smart ones see Perry for what he is. Those enamored with their governor need to realize he's far from conservative and there are more conservative candidates in the race. Supporting Perry at this juncture just isn't wise.

83 posted on 11/10/2011 6:04:43 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: South40

OK Robert who are you supporting?


84 posted on 11/10/2011 6:07:31 PM PST by Ditter
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To: bobk333
The Perry campaign is a dead horse. It’s time for him to get off.

In all seriousness - he is much worse than I had expected.

Perry had quite a reputation and was highly regarded before he began his run for the nomination. He was the King of Texas and at the top of his game as far as the rest of the country knew. But moving onto the national stage has been a flop. His dismal debate performances have destroyed that cachet. He will return to the Texas Governorship a much weakened politician.

What we are seeing reminds me of football coach Jimmy Johnson. When he coached the Dallas Cowboys from a 1-15 season in 1989 to win consecutive Super Bowls in 1992 and 1993 he was looked on as almost infallible. If the NFL dispensed Knighthoods he would have been first in line.

Three years later when he took over as head coach for the Miami Dolphins he was the Golden Boy. It was expected he would bring them to the top of the league but he fell flat on his face.

He lost the aura of invincibility that cloaked him when he left Texas at the top of his game and became just another coach with a record that put him way back in the pack.


85 posted on 11/10/2011 6:11:56 PM PST by Iron Munro (One Trillion seconds = 31,709 years. One Trillion dollars = 3 Months of Obama Spending)
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To: JDW11235

I have misgivings about each of the candidates, but none would I call a “moron.” None would I mock for a momentary lapse of memory.
It just seems over the top to me.
As for his record, at least he has one.


86 posted on 11/10/2011 6:14:11 PM PST by Lady Lucky
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To: Ditter
My name is not Robert, Erkel.

If you had bothered to look down and see my tagline you would know who I support.

87 posted on 11/10/2011 6:17:43 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: South40

Tag lines don’t show when you read on your comments page Robert.


88 posted on 11/10/2011 6:20:34 PM PST by Ditter
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To: Ditter

Try paying attention, Erkel. I’ve been advocating for Cain for months. Did you just get out of the joint, or what?


89 posted on 11/10/2011 6:27:16 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

It was one minute from a 2 hour debate and its all the MSM will show. Nothing else at the debate is newsworthy I guess.

The MSM will never cover the issues.


90 posted on 11/10/2011 6:32:25 PM PST by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Happiness)
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To: South40

LOL! Did I just get out of the joint? That’s funny!

All I ever see of your posts are bashing Perry and being rude to Perry supporters, that’s it. There is a whole nasty little gang of you guys doing that. So you like Cain are you part of his paid staff?


91 posted on 11/10/2011 6:42:00 PM PST by Ditter
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To: JDW11235

“I have yet to hear something that Rick Perry is constitutionally conservative on. Not one thing.”

I’m sure if you were to look hard enough, you would find something. Problem is, it’s just not worth the effort.


92 posted on 11/10/2011 6:42:00 PM PST by RKBA Democrat (Cain & Gingrich 2012..theres plenty of work to be done!)
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To: sockmonkey
Me too. I might have read a book a dozen times, be able to recall specific details in it, but either the name of the book or author will be momentarily gone.

Once I couldn't recall the name of the Cisco Kid's horse. Casual conversation with others after a meeting, we got around to naming movie cowboys' steeds - couldn't recall the name (which I hadn't thought about for 30 years). Oh well it's gone. Go to car park, start car "Diablo" just like that.

93 posted on 11/10/2011 6:47:01 PM PST by Oztrich Boy (New gets old. Steampunk is always cool)
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To: Ditter
I advocate for Cain regularly. It's not my fault you're too busy carrying water for La Raza Rick Perry that you failed to notice.

All I ever see of your posts are bashing Perry and being rude to Perry supporters, that’s it.


94 posted on 11/10/2011 6:52:51 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: Ditter; South40

“There is a whole nasty little gang of you guys doing that. So you like Cain are you part of his paid staff?”

I would say much the same about the perrywinkles.

You know there does come a point, and I think we’re pretty much there, where discussing a candidate is simply pointless. Gov. Perry is not going to be nominated by the gop, nor is he going to be President of the U.S. The question is not whether he withdraws, it’s if he does so soon with some shreds of his reputation intact.


95 posted on 11/10/2011 6:53:57 PM PST by RKBA Democrat (Cain & Gingrich 2012..theres plenty of work to be done!)
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To: RKBA Democrat

The PerryBots know how nasty they are. Have you ever accused them of hating females and wanting them to die of cancer? Neither have I. But that’s the level they have taken the discourse only to accuse conservatives of being on the attack. Their whole argument is as laughable as is their worthless candidate.


96 posted on 11/10/2011 6:59:24 PM PST by South40 (To Tear Down Herman Cain is to aid Mitt Romney & the Marxist Kenyan)
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To: South40
I have not seen the Perrywinkles act nearly as bad as the Palin/Cain people. Is Gargantua still around or did he choke on his own tongue?

I guess you missed the part where I told you I am not and have not supported anyone yet, but I WILL vote for the Republican nominee in the general election. Can you say the same about your vote in the general election?

97 posted on 11/10/2011 7:02:35 PM PST by Ditter
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To: Ditter

The most egregious of the Cain people are posting with Mitt Romney’s money. Once you get past that, they cease to get under your skin.


98 posted on 11/10/2011 7:06:54 PM PST by txhurl
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To: RKBA Democrat

“The question is not whether he withdraws, it’s if he does so soon with some shreds of his reputation intact.”

So you think if he withdraws right now after this debate, that’s really best for his reputation? Somehow I don’t think you are worried about his reputation.


99 posted on 11/10/2011 7:08:40 PM PST by independent in tx
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To: txhurl

I figured as much.


100 posted on 11/10/2011 7:09:15 PM PST by Ditter
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