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Dear DC, you can have Rick Perry, we don’t want him anymore. Love, Texas

When “well-placed sources” began to discuss that Rick Perry might enter the presidential race–there was excitement across the Tea party nation.  And a sigh of relief in Texas.

This is not a scientific data.  But, here is a random sampling of the responses of my Facebook friends (all Texas natives, most conservative) when I posted a story about Perry throwing his hat into the ring.   “This depresses me.” “Puke.” “You’ve got to be kidding.” “ugh, no.” I know the old adage is that no one is welcome in their hometown. And many politicians have dealt with the issue of being disliked in their home state; but, the concern with Perry is the devastation he has left behind in Texas, and what he could do to our nation.

Two of the comments of my friends were most enlightening; both of them are Texas educators–one a high school teacher, the other a college professor. The first comment: “Now the rest of the country will learn what everyone in education in Texas already knows –this guy is a [frakking] moron!” The second comment: “It’ll get him out of Texas. Maybe the schools will have recovered before my three-month old starts kindergarten.” While I agree with many of my friends, and would love for Rick Perry to no longer be governor, I cringe at the thought of what he could do to our already crumbling educational system.

With a $10 billion shortfall in the state budget, and a governor who refused to use the state’s “rainy day” emergency fund to fix the problem–legislators have been faced with a 20% cut (roughly $4 billion) to education this session.
Even pro-business, pro-Republican groups have openly begun to question the wisdom of Perry’s cuts to education, worried about the future of the state without an educated workforce.
And while Perry has agreed to create more Research One institutions in Texas, the backhanded way that he has attempted to control the administration at Texas A&M (his alma mater, and mine) suggests a desire to control the type of university education we will offer in Texas.  And His continual appointment of members to the Texas Board of Education who demand that publishers rewrite history books and science books to their liking is shocking, and shows his disregard for all kinds of education.
And even though, like my friends, I cannot wait for Mr. Perry to no longer influence the educational system my daughter is in, I worry more about what his influence might be on children across the country. So, I hope he runs.  I hope he has all his secrets revealed and then returns to Texas without a job.
But, that’s wishful thinking.

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About Kristina Campos

College professor at a conservative school in the South. Life-long Progressive.