Texas Governor Rick Perry kicked off his 2012 run for the United States Presidency at Newport Beach’s Roger’s Gardens before a lively and vocal crowd of about 1000 supporters. Not surprisingly, Perry’s speech focused on the economy and job creation pointing out the gains made by Texas in the past four years in stark contrast to the United States as a whole under the Obama Administration during that same time period.
“If you want contrast, I’ve got contrast with President Obama,” commented a charismatic Perry. “I want to wake up every day and have it my goal to render Washington D.C. irrelevant to your lives,” Perry said in remarks that were wildly received by the crowd. The Presidential candidate also focused on the size and purpose of the federal government calling current policies misguided and confusing economic growth with the growth of government.
Before Governor Perry took the dais, remarks were made that the last time that a crowd this size was gathered at this location it was for then California Governor Ronald Reagan. A very warm reception was also provided to former OC Republican Party Chairman Tom Fuentes who literally left his death bed to do the invocation. Presidential candidate Perry was introduced to the crowd by Orange County Supervisor Shawn Nelson who lauded the “provocative” nature of the Texas Governor’s style. “Is it ‘provocative’ to ask that the interpretation of the Constitution be limited to the actual words of the document?” queried Nelson. “To make a change in this country we are going to need a candidate who is willing to use provocative language to shake up politics as usual.”
A single protest sign could be seen in the distance poking out above the profile of the building, but the noise of the excited crowd drowned out any intended message.