Former Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) is not letting up in his ongoing battle with Donald Trump. On Wednesday, he went after his presidential competition with a hard-hitting speech delivered in Washington, D.C., throwing in a little bit of humor as well.
The two have been exchanging rhetorical blows for several weeks.
After Trump referred to illegal immigrants from Mexico as “rapists” in his campaign announcement speech, Perry said that Trump’s remarks “did not reflect the Republican Party.” Trump fired back by attacking Perry’s record on border security, and Perry posted a YouTube video inviting Trump to “take a trip down to Texas sometime.” Trump is reportedly going to do just that, with a visit scheduled on Thursday to Laredo, as Breitbart Texas reported.
Then, on Saturday, after Trump said that Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) was only viewed as a war hero “because he was captured,” Perry issued a statement saying that Trump was “unfit to be Commander-in-Chief” and should apologize to McCain and withdraw from the race. The remainder of the Republican field also defended McCain, and most denounced Trump’s comments, but few even came close to Perry’s level of condemnation.
The sparring continued on Wednesday. In the morning, the @TeamRickPerry Twitter account posted a short video with Governor Perry’s “biggest supporter,” none other than Donald Trump.
— Team Rick Perry (@TeamRickPerry) July 22, 2015
The video includes a series of news clips where Trump is saying supportive, flattering things about Perry, in direct contradiction to the comments he has said over the past few weeks.
“I think he’s a very impressive guy with a very good record…he’s really serious, I think he’s going to do a really good job…he’s a terrific guy with a great record…he’s been an effective governor.”
The video ends with an image of a Tweet Trump once posted, “Texas is lucky to have him — @GovernorPerry is a great guy!”
On a more serious note, Perry is delivering a speech at an event organized by the Super PAC supporting him, Opportunity and Freedom PAC, in which he remains sharply critical not just about Trump’s rhetoric but his position on key issues.
“The next president will face serious issues that demand serious leadership,” Perry’s speech will begin, according to prepared remarks provided to Breitbart News. He’ll explain the many challenges facing America, and how they have been made harder by the failed policies of the Obama administration. He then will tell how American political and military leaders have risen to the occasion throughout our country’s history to work for the good of the nation.
Perry will then turn to what is at the heart of his criticism of Trump:
The White House has been occupied by giants. But from time to time it is sought by the small-minded – divisive figures propelled by anger, and appealing to the worst instincts in the human condition.
In times of trouble, there are two types of leaders: repairers of the breach and sowers of discord.
The sower of discord foments agitation, thrives on division, scapegoats certain elements of society, and offers empty platitudes and promises. He is without substance when one scratches below the surface.
He offers a barking carnival act that can be best described as Trumpism: a toxic mix of demagoguery, mean-spiritedness and nonsense that will lead the Republican Party to perdition if pursued.
Let no one be mistaken – Donald Trump’s candidacy is a cancer on conservatism, and it must be clearly diagnosed, excised and discarded.
It cannot be pacified or ignored, for it will destroy a set of principles that has lifted more people out of poverty than any force in the history of the civilized world – the cause of conservatism.
Breitbart News will continue to follow this story and provide updates after the video of the speech is available.
Follow Sarah Rumpf on Twitter @rumpfshaker.