USA — Texas Governor Rick Perry seems to have a habit of talking out of both sides of his mouth. The staunch states’ rights conservative, who frequently blasts Obama and “big government,” is apparently upset that the federal government has not given him money to help with the wildfire disaster.
Wait, what? Mr. Perry, you can’t have it both ways. You believe that anything not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution is the realm of state responsibility, and yet you’re mad the federal government has not yet stepped in to help in what is, clearly, a state matter?
The Governor’s tirade is the result of President Obama’s trip to tornado-lashed Alabama, where the destruction was not limited to one area. Entire towns were destroyed, such as Hackleburg, whose Wrangler plant and high school were among the victims of the F5 tornado.
The president immediately declared the state a disaster area and vowed to provide assistance. The death toll for the storms just keeps rising, and dead bodies continue to be pulled from the rubble.
Admittedly, the state has been hit hard with a series of wildfires, with hundreds of thousands of acres burned and hundreds of buildings destroyed. In Possum Kingdom Lake, an area in western North Texas, 90 percent of the recreation area was burned and destroyed about 160 of the 3,000 homes. Most of those were weekend houses and not permanent residences. Thankfully, this fire has been contained.
In far West Texas, a wildfire that has destroyed 310,000 thousand acres continues to burn. It has destroyed 41 homes. Firefighters from four states have come to give assistance, many of them are federal firefighters.
Governor Rick Perry’s constant confrontational attitude towards the president seems to know no bounds. First, he wants to secede, then he refuses federal funds from the stimulus, and then he takes it. Of course, the money he got that was supposed to be used for educational purposes was diverted into the general fund.
And now, when an entire state like Alabama has entire towns completely leveled, Perry is crying like a baby because he hasn’t gotten his share. Perhaps the governor’s hair got in the way of his brain function, because, according to Rachel Racusen, the spokesperson for FEMA, Texas has gotten 22 federal grants to help fight the fires. A total of 16 of those came in April alone.
In an interview last week with a Dallas/Fort Worth television station, President Obama took a swipe at Perry’s criticism. He said:
Governor Perry helped balance his budget with about $6 billion worth of federal help – which he happily tookand then started blaming the members of Congress who had offered that help.
The federal funds the President was referring to was the 2009 federal stimulus package, which Perry threatened to refuse but ultimately accepted.