As the wildfires blaze across Texas, Governor Rick Perry has had to cut his campaigning short to monitor the disaster. The winds of Tropical Storm Lee created dozens of wildfires on Sunday, leaving the state in a tough position on Monday. Two people are dead and hundreds of homes have been destroyed. Perry heads home today. He was planning on appearing today with Republican Senator Jim DeMint at a forum in South Carolina. Instead of making a big Labor Day appearance with the Tea Party favorite, the GOP presidential candidate will go back to Texas and play the role of Governor.
This is certainly a smart move. Abandoning his state during a natural disaster would not look good for a man who has ambitions to be President of the United States. The nation does have some abandonment issues after the lackluster reaction to Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Skipping the Palmetto Freedom Forum
So, Perry heads home and misses the Palmetto Freedom Forum, which is sponsored by the South Carolina Senator, Jim DeMint. Governor Perry's people notified the Senator's office this morning. Aside from the Texas Governor, who has so far remained a strong contender in the Republican race, five other candidates are expected to participate in the forum. While South Carolina is certainly an important state and the forum would give Perry a chance to shine, more people will be focused on the Texas fires in the news today than one of many campaign stops. By going back to Texas, Perry has the chance to display any leadership skills in the position he does have.
Perry Heads Home After Town Hall Meeting
Rick Perry will return to Texas after an event in Conway, South Carolina. He has also canceled plans to fly to California on Tuesday. With the wildfires still burning and thousands evacuated across Texas, there will be a lot of work for the Governor. Firefighters are having trouble handling the dozens of fires. For residents of a state that has already had to weather wildfires since November and billions of dollars of losses, leadership during this sudden disaster is more important than seeing their governor rant about the 'myth' of man-made global warming.