MANCHESTER, N.H. — Texas Gov. Rick Perry told a backyard gathering of hundreds Saturday afternoon that President Barack Obama's massive fiscal stimulus failed because his interest is in creating jobs that expand government.
"Listen, when it comes to economic growth, I know that the answer is not forcing government stimulus to go through some massive bureaucracy to a handful of hand-picked industries to create temporary jobs," Perry said at the Manchester home of the brother of John Stephen, the GOP nominee for New Hampshire governor last year.
Perry then addressed Obama directly: "Mr. President, you cannot spend your way to prosperity. It doesn't work. It's never worked. I'm tired of liberals who only care about jobs just to staff up more government programs."
While the Republicans running against him for their party's presidential nomination are "all good men and women," Perry said that, "as we consider this economic misery that's spread across this country by the Obama administration, we don't need a nominee who's gonna blur the differences between themselves and Barack Obama. We're gonna have a nominee who draws a clear contrast."
Outlining those contrasts, Perry told the crowd standing in near-Texas style heat that "the differences between President Obama and myself are great: He's lost more than a million jobs while he's been president; I've created a million jobs since I've been the governor.
“He's increased debt by $4 trillion; I've signed six balanced budgets. I'm the only governor in Texas since World War II that's reduced general revenue spending; he's proposed a government takeover of healthcare and mandated insurance coverage on every one of our citizens."
Perry amplified the promise he made a week earlier in Iowa to repeal President Obama's healthcare reform by executive act — and on his first day as president.
"Listen, I know the people of New Hampshire," Perry told the crowd. "Granite Staters are not going to settle for a future that's less than our past. This is the state whose motto is 'Live Free or Die.' But you can't live free when the federal government takes over one-sixth of the economy and violates the sanctity of the doctor-patient relationship. Obamacare must be repealed."
Perry promised, "I will repeal Obamacare as soon as possible, the first day I step into the Oval Office, with a signature on an executive order."
He told the gathering, "It is up to us, the present generation of Americans, to take a stand for freedom, to send a message to Washington, D.C., that we are taking our future back from the grips of the central planners who would control our healthcare, spend our treasure, downgrade our future, and micromanage our lives."
With some conservatives critical of his record on amnesty for illegal aliens, Perry used Saturday's appearance to charge that "the federal government has been an abject failure in securing our border with Mexico."
To "close down that border down" against drug cartel-oriented illegal activities, Perry said, "We have to put the boots on the ground, we have to commit to the aviation assets.
“You cannot have a conversation about any immigration policy until you deal with the border of Mexico."
Again alluding to Obama, Perry said, "When the president goes to El
Paso and proclaims that the border between Texas and Mexico is safer than
it's ever been, I don't know what he's looking at or who he's listening too,
but he is terribly wrong."
A member of the crowd shouted out, "Do you support a fence on the border?" Perry answered, "No, I don't support a fence on the border. I think strategic fencing is part of the strategy, but it's 1,200 miles from Brownsville to El Paso."
Elaborating, Perry added, "Two things: How long do you think it would take to build that? And then if you build a 30-foot wall from El Paso to Brownsville, the 35-foot ladder business gets real good."
His conclusion: “You've gotta have people on the ground. And it's
gotta be law enforcement. That's why I've asked for a thousand National Guard troops from this administration since January of 2009 — and we've been stonewalled."
Last week, a Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found Perry leading President Obama 44 percent to 41 percent.
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