As people start taking a closer look at Rick Perry and his record some of the shine begins to flake off. Oh, certainly since the Tea Party’s growth he has asserted his Tea Party credentials with a book and rhetoric. Where did he stand however before the Tea Party developed into a political force? How much of his Tea Party conversion is sincere versus just chasing political trends? I certainly do not know his mind nor do I deny that a person can sincerely change their mind on issues. I do however think it due diligence to consider the record and the context of events within.

Consider the Gardasil vaccination mandate that he tried to impose via Executive Order. Yes, he admits that it was a mistake but where was his head that he every thought Legislating via Executive Order was a good thing? Where does that principle fit in with a limited government supporting ideology?

How about the NAFTA/CAFTA Super Highway? Remember that one from a few years back? The 2 mile wide transportation project that would have taken millions of acres in land by eminent domain along with establishing “inland ports”. As you may recall this was all part of the SPP (Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America), known in some circles as the North American Union.

But let us get to the topic at hand, the TARP bailouts. Many say Gov. Perry supported the bailouts while the Governor denies that such is the case. In truth I say that the governor has deniability on the issue. Gov. Perry along with Gov. Manchin jointly wrote a letter to the Senate on the morning of the Bailout vote urging them to “pass an economic recovery package”. Now, the package that came to be known as TARP was the only thing going at the time and it was up for vote the very day this letter was sent.

Gov. Perry would have us believe that he was not supporting the bailout, only urging Congress to do something.

Now, later the same day of the letter Gov. Perry did release another statement.

“In a free market economy, government should not be in the business of using taxpayer dollars to bail out corporate America. Congress needs to take off its partisan gloves and work together to bring both short and long term stability to the credit markets. They need to stop blaming each other and start thinking about solutions that put the taxpayers of this country first.”

Now to me this combination of circumstances and statements comes across a whole lot like “I’m for it and I’m against it.” Was he pushing Congress to pass the bailout at the same time he was covering his political career with the statement above or did many people and the media simply mistakenly think his letter was a sign of bailout support?

It may be true that he didn’t support TARP but to me it seems much more likely that it’s just a matter of playing politics.

The main thing is to ask questions and dig, not just on Gov. Perry but all the candidates.