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Bully Pulpit

The term "bully pulpit" stems from President Theodore Roosevelt's reference to the White House as a "bully pulpit," meaning a terrific platform from which to persuasively advocate an agenda. Roosevelt often used the word "bully" as an adjective meaning superb/wonderful. The Bully Pulpit features news, reasoned discourse, opinion and some humor.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Lesson of Perry's candidacy: Think before you run

(By Byron York, Campaign 2012) - What's wrong with Rick Perry? How did the successful, well-liked, long-term governor of one of America's largest states enter the Republican presidential primary race with great fanfare, zoom to the top of the polls, and then slide almost as quickly back into the pack?

Blaming the Texas governor's problems on a lackluster debating style -- as Perry himself has done after a number of poor performances -- answers only part of the question. Yes, debates are particularly important this campaign season. But debates are more than just style and popularity contests. They reveal deeper things about candidates; voters watching debates can learn not only how a candidate handles tough questions but whether he is really, truly prepared to run for the White House.

Early in Perry's candidacy, there was a spate of stories suggesting he's not smart enough to be president. They weren't subtle; one was headlined "Is Rick Perry Dumb?" But even Perry's critics could look at those stories and say: Here is a man who has successfully governed a large and complex state, presided over prosperity and growth, dealt with the political challenges that go with it all, and won re-election repeatedly. Successful governorships don't just happen by accident; Perry's results in Texas show he is a smart, competent executive.


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