A Gallup poll released on Wednesday puts Texas GovernorRick Perry at the head of the pack for the GOP’s 2012 Presidential nomination with 29 percent of Republicans saying they support the candidate. Following Perry are Mitt Romney,
at second with 17 percent, and Ron Paul, at third with 13 percent.
Perry has publicly expressed support of lessening the reach of Federal governmental powers and has championed States’ rights, but many doubt the candidate’s sincerity. Doubts stem from Perry’s past denials of any interest to run for the office of President and his entrance to the world of politics as a Democrat on the Texas Legislature in 1984. Another issue involves past close ties to Al Gore. Perry has defended his past by saying that things were different when he worked with Gore.
“This was Al Gore before he invented the Internet and got to be Mr. Global Warming,” Perry said. “Growing up in rural Texas, I never met a Republican until I was 25. … In 1988 when you looked at the candidates, Al Gore was the most conservative candidate that was out there.”
Perry’s explanations, however, fall short for many people, including Texas-based Constitutionalist radio host Alex Jones, who has continually questioned the candidate’s motives and conservative values.
“Rick Perry has shown himself to be the most duplicitous, deceptive politician that I have ever studied in the history of the United States,” Jones said in a recent broadcast.
Jones also noted Perry’s 2007 decision to bypass the Texas Legislature and require school-aged girls to receive a human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV), Gardasil, created by Merck & Co., which raised concerns about the Governor’s ties to the company predating his mandate. One of the drug company’s lobbyists and a consultant at The Texas Lobby Group, Mike Toomey, worked as Perry’s chief of staff; the Governor reportedly also received donations to his political action committee from the company.
Despite doubts, Perry leads all other Republican candidates against President Barack Obama in a recent Rasmussen report. The report shows Perry receiving 40 percent favorability to Obama’s 43 percent in a recent telephone poll.