Call it a stemwinder, a barn burner, an eye opener or what you will: Texas Gov. Rick Perry's short and fiery speech to conservatives Friday had the crowd on its feet and whooping.

"It's time for a little rebellion on the battlefield of ideas!'' Perry told the Conservative Political Action Conference as its opening speaker on the second day of its annual gathering.

Saying that red states are at the forefront of conservative change, Perry excoriated the federal government for overstepping its constitutional bounds — "Get out of the health care business! Get out of the education business!" — and called on Washington to limit itself to defense and foreign policy. "And what the heck — deliver the mail, preferably on time and on Saturdays."

He praised Republican governors for cutting taxes and regulations – and slipped in a plug for Texas' job growth — in contrast to states with Democratic leaders which, he said, are "implementing the tired old recipe of backbreaking taxes and regulations that are larger than a 30-ounce Big Gulp."

Not mentioned in his honor roll, which included South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, was yesterday's CPAC star, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who may be Perry's rival for the GOP presidential nomination in 2016. The Texan is leaving office next year and has said that, despite his flame-out in 2012, running again for the Republican nomination is a "viable option."


Read or Share this story: