Texas Governor Backs Giuliani
Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Wednesday endorsed Rudy Giuliani for president, calling him a candidate with "clarity of purpose" on the issues of terrorism, crime fighting, taxes and border security. "I'm looking for a proven leader who's been succesful in disrupting and dismantling criminal enterprises," Perry said at a news conference in Washington, D.C. "Executive experience matters for the next president of the United States."
Perry's endorsement gives Giuliani important support from a sitting governor in a big, southern state as the former New York mayor seeks to solidify support across the country.
The Texas governor is also a conservative whose anti-abortion credentials could help Giuliani reach out to pro-life conservatives. Perry said he asked Giuliani "tough questions" about that issue before deciding to endorse him.
Perry said Giuliani assured him that he would appoint "strict constructionist" judges that made Perry comfortable about several issues on which he differs with Giuliani.
Perry also took a swipe at his former gubernatorial colleague, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney. Singing Giuliani's praises as a leader, Perry mocked Romney's answer during the last debate about consulting attorneys before attacking Iran.
The next president, Perry said, "must be willing to avt decisively to respond to threats without dialing up their lawyers first."
The comment drew a hearty and knowing laugh from Giuliani.
--Michael D. Shear
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