Day After Perry Blunder: What Government Agency Would YOU Like to Forget?

It was awkward. It was embarrassing. It was painful. It was 53 seconds.

During last night’s debate, Rick Perry forgot the third government agency in addition to the Departments of Commerce and Education he would get rid of during his administration. (It was the Department of Energy…which he remembered when he next answered a question.)

After the debate, Perry admitted, ““I’m glad I had my boots on, because I sure stepped in it tonight.”

The flub was the last thing his campaign needed after a string of underwhelming debate performances from Perry. However, I have to credit his campaign staff for coming up with a creative reaction and fundraising idea (shocker) to Perry’s epic brain fart.

This morning I woke up to an email from his campaign saying, “We’ve all had human moments. President Obama is still trying to find all 57 states. Ronald Reagan got lost somewhere on the Pacific Highway in an answer to a debate question. Gerald Ford ate a tamale without removing the husk. And tonight Rick Perry forgot the third agency he wants to eliminate. Just goes to show there are too damn many federal agencies.” The e-mail ended with a link asking for a $5 donation for every government agency the reader would like to forget or to send ideas to the Twitter hashtag #forgetmenot. C’mon, that’s funny. Kudos to the campaign for redirecting as well as they possibly could. (Do you think Obama or Romney are considering cutting a federal agency?)

I’m not saying Perry can recover  from this, but I also don’t think you can put a fork in his campaign either. Just a reminder, the Perry campaign has raised over 17 million dollars. Newt? Under 3 million. Cain? Under 6 million.


  1. Anonpolito says:

    What a magnificent blunder of historic proportions. I’m sure Bill Hader will be pretty busy mastering his impersonation of Rick Perry further between now and Saturday night. I’ve already secured the popcorn.

    Anyway, to your point, well, hmmmm… gosh… this is embarrassing….


  2. The beat goes on. Obama’s back is covered by the accomplice press. The R’s put on a show for the D’s and the press while they wait for the inevitable gaff. All the while the implication is that a R candidate must meet a standard of perfection because, after all, a D never makes a (widely reported, discussed, and replayed) gaff.

  3. The sad part is that the agency he forgot was the Department of Energy.

    Energy. You know, pretty much the only thing Perry has been talking about for the past month.

    I actually do agree that Perry might still have a sliver of a chance if he runs a flawless campaign from here on out.

  4. I project that Perry thinks there are 57 states. Can I intern for MSDNC?

  5. The guy from Texas forgot the Dept. of Energy. Wow. The media has every right to hammer on Perry.

    All Romney has to do is run out the clock on these clowns.

  6. “All Romney has to do is run out the clock on these clowns.”

    Yeah, at this point is seems to me it is 98% Romney, 1% Cain (he is found completely as innocent and Romney has an amazing series of gaffes or a scandal of his own), and 1% Perry (Perry pulls it together, Romney has a scandal, and the Cain scandal gets worse).

    I’m worried that Kasich’s political blunders in Ohio might cost the Republicans the White House. There are paths to 270 without OH (well, at least there are for Romney), but it gets tricky.

  7. If the Republicans don’t win OH, then they need to do the following:

    Win all the 2008 states, IN, VA, NC, FL, NH, NV, CO, AND one more state (IA, WI, MI, NM, etc.)

  8. Randy in Richmond says:

    Did you not notice the Ohio vote on Obamacare ? The vote was a resounding “No” to accepting Obamacare–by a 66 % — 34 % margin. This result was in the same Ohio where Kasich’s anti-union legislation was defeated.

    The Kasich collective bargaining law that was rejected included firefighters and law-enforcement officials, something Walker’s initiative did not. Perhaps in retrospect Walker was smarter than many gave him credit for by not including those groups in his Wisconsin legislation. I would suggest the rejection of Obamacare by such a large margin may not bode well for Obama in 2012.

    And in my state of Virginia, which Obama carried in 2008, Republicans gained control of the State Senate ( 1 race may involve recount) and increased their House lead by 7 seats –in addition to electing Republican Bob McDonnell in 2009 who won with over 58 % of the vote.

  9. Randy – thanks for that observation. Would you make it into a new post? I thinks it’s important.

  10. I’m just saying that having a Republican governor with a 36/52 approval/disapproval rating in a state we pretty much have to win is not a good sign.

  11. Not sure why the Ohio inclusion of the public safety workers led to the defeat of the referendum. If WI voters were given the choice, I think the WI bill would likely have failed as well. (And I’m not sure if Walker has ever given a credible reason not to include these groups in his bill).

  12. Randy in Richmond says:

    That’s missing the point entirely.

  13. Randy,
    Not sure if your comment was directed at mine. I admit that I have not followed the story in Ohio other than seeing the finals results. You wrote:
    The Kasich collective bargaining law that was rejected included firefighters and law-enforcement officials, something Walker’s initiative did not. Perhaps in retrospect Walker was smarter than many gave him credit for by not including those groups in his Wisconsin legislation.
    I took it to mean that one was possibly defeated due to the inclusion (of the public safety people) and one was enacted due to their exclusion.

  14. I think Randy was being nice, Bemused. As in, you don’t want to see the point?

    For what it’s worth, I still think it was a great observation by Randy.

  15. I agree with Randy. Thankfully, Ohio strongly rejected Obamacare.

    But the voter’s flip/flop at the voting booth was puzzling. I believe they fell for the Union scare tactic that if Kasich’s plan was enacted, they would suffer reduced police and fire protection. Remember, in their state, the reforms had not yet taken effect. They couldn’t see that the sky wouldn’t fall when his reforms took place.

    Plus, the Unions no doubt were running ad after ad fostering those fears. If the Republicans in Ohio are anything like here, their message was probably very weak.

    I believe Walker’s motivation for not including police in fire in his reforms was to remove at least those scare tactics from the debate. Had the recall mania not hit, then police and fire could be addressed… after the public saw his reforms did not result in massive layoffs or reduced services.

  16. Oops, :), I forgot to say, I am still hoping for a Perry comeback.

    Newt, according to Drudge today, is now polling at 19%, 2nd to Romney at 23%. Of course, once his moment in the limelight also shines on his skeletons and inconsistency of message, he will fall from grace too. Perry to me is the consistent, experienced conservative–not perfect, but consistent.

    Some talk show hosts hinted that the reason he forgot the department of energy was because he really didn’t believe in what he was saying. Yikes. He is from Texas, which means oil country, and he really didn’t believe in abolishing the department that foils so much of our domestic oil production? Sometimes, people just draw a blank–my Aunt once couldn’t think of her husband’s name when making introductions! It happens.

    Perry in a one-on-one interview, a speech, or outlining his plan, as he did in the Nov. 3 Washington Times “When I am president…”, does great.

    I think this constant debate mode, especially when hosted by unfriendly media personalities, only tells you who can be the king of the soundbite. It is hurting, not helping. And then they keep scheduling more debates. (I wonder why?)

  17. It seems to me that whether police and fire were included or excluded is irrelevant at this point. Either way there’s going to be a recall effort.

  18. Good points KP

  19. “Effort” doesn’t equal recall doesn’t equal new governor. Two folks can manage an “effort.”