AUSTIN, Texas – Former Texas Governor Rick Perry spoke with a group of journalists on the lawn of the Governor’s Mansion following the presentation of two Texas Legislative Medals of Honor. Perry committed to staying in the race for president and sounded like a candidate with a lot of fight left in him.
The majority of Perry’s conversation with the reporters, including Breitbart Texas, centered mostly around border security. He concluded his remarks saying, “When I am President of the United States, the will will reside in the Oval Office every day to secure that border.”
Perry first spoke about the financial condition of his campaign. He said he is used to not having money. “All of my life, I have been short of money,” the 2016 Republican presidential hopeful lamented, “as probably most people in this country have been as well.”
“Actually, we were short of money here in 2003, when I was the governor,” Perry said while pointing at the Texas Capitol across the street. “We know how to deal with a shortage of money – you cut spending. This is just a challenge that happens in a lot of places and times. I still have as much passion about this country as I did four years ago.”
Reporters asked the former Texas governor about the rhetoric being thrown at him by other candidates such as Donald Trump and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush.
“Americans are going to sort through this,” Perry responded firmly. “I really believe, at the end of the day, Americans are going to want results not rhetoric. And when you say something, you need to be able to prove it up.”
“Let’s go build a wall,” Perry said jokingly about Trumps rhetoric. “Nobody’s got more experience dealing with that border than I do with fourteen years as the governor of this state.”
“We dealt with the border issue for a long time,” he continued, “and the idea that you are going to build a wall from Brownsville to El Paso, hang a left and go on to Tijuana is just not reality.”
“The way you secure the border, I think, is by putting people in the proper places,” Perry explained, “ having strategic fencing in the metropolitan areas, and then aviation assets which is really the major part that’s missing today.”
“From Tijuana to El Paso to Brownsville, 1933 miles, looking down with the technology we have available and identifying the activities that are going on,” Perry said, laying out his plan. He said that when you find activities that are clearly illegal you then deploy strategic rapid response teams to address those issues.
He stated his belief that America can secure the border. “I would suggest to you that we do it in a substantially expedited way,” he explained, “and in a more economically feasible way for this country than this throw-away line of ‘Let’s go build a wall.’”
When asked what Trump means by that Perry laughed and said, “I’ll let him explain what that means.”
Perry then returned to his comfortable line of “having been governor for fourteen years of the twelfth largest economy in the world… Results are what America is looking for, not rhetoric.”
Perry deflected on the issue of birthright citizenship. He emphasized that if you secure the border first, many of these other issues become less important. He explained that whether it is the cost to states for education and healthcare or the issue of birthright citizenship, “all of those are symptoms of the greater problem. And, the greater problem is we have not secured the border.”
He went on to reiterate his position that it is the federal government’s responsibility to secure the border. “The real cost of these issues is securing the border,” he again stated emphatically. “Secure the border, and birthright citizenship is not even an issue that people are going to be concerned about.”
“The federal government needs to do its duty,” Perry stated. “Secure the border. We know how to do that. When I am President of the United States, the will will reside in the Oval Office every day to secure that border.”