Issues - 10th Amendment and the Fighting Intrusive Washington Policies

Folks in Washington should take a closer look at the Tenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which clearly states the preeminence of states’ rights in the structure of our country. The time has come to assert those rights, and remind the federal government that it was created to serve states, not the other way around. Left unchecked, Washington will continue digging our country into a hole of debt, increased government intrusion and the loss of personal liberty.

  • Out-of-control spending. Unlike the federal government that has a $1.4 trillion dollar deficit and debt that amounts to more than $37,000 per person, Gov. Perry has led the effort to save taxpayer dollars by prioritizing spending instead of raising taxes and preserving the state’s $8 billion surplus. Washington needs to take a page from Texas’ playbook and start working to live within its means, like we do here in Texas, where our legislature is required to balance the budget each biennium. The federal government’s out of control spending is creating a mountain of debt that our children and grandchildren will be left to bear.
  • Cap and Trade. Gov. Perry has actively opposed the cap-and-trade legislation pending before the U.S. Senate and already passed by the House of Representatives. As states learn more about the devastating impact this bill will have on their state and citizens – from job losses, raising energy prices, and increased taxes on goods and services Texans depend upon – Texans need to urge their Senators to vote against what would be the largest tax increase on Americans in history, including an average increase in annual living costs of approximately $1,200 per Texas household.

    Rather than adopting misguided legislation or allowing the EPA to overly regulate every sector of the economy, Gov. Perry has proposed the federal government follow Texas’ lead by utilizing incentives to make alternative energy technologies less expensive and removing barriers to innovation and competition. Modernizing the national energy grid to support wind and solar energy transmission, facilitating investments in the development of carbon capture and sequestration, and removing barriers to investment in nuclear generation would reduce carbon emissions while encouraging competitiveness, innovation and growth in alternative energy sources. Texas’ efforts have made it the largest wind energy producer in the nation and all but four other countries, and a leader in other clean energy sources including solar, biofuels, nuclear and clean coal. At the same time, Texas has reduced carbon emission levels more than any other state except Louisiana and more than any other nation except Germany.

  • Federal Healthcare Reform. The federal government is spending huge amounts of borrowed money on fixes that don't necessarily solve the problem. The "one-size-fits-all" approach to healthcare just doesn’t work because it hinders Texas’ ability to apply local solutions to local problems and stifles the sort of innovative solutions that states can create when given the chance. The current proposals circulating through Congress could cost Texas up to $21 billion over the next 10 years. A better solution to healthcare challenges should be to allow states greater flexibility to address their own unique needs, and should focus on delivering care as cost-effectively as possible. A free market approach that promotes more competition and innovation will help bring about improvements to access and quality.

    Under Gov. Perry’s leadership, Texas has proposed its own healthcare alternatives which include promoting reforms to the small employer health insurance market, working to reduce the number of uninsured Texans by restructuring federal Medicaid funding to reduce reliance on expensive emergency room visits for non-emergency care, and make it easier for the working poor to buy into employer-sponsored health coverage. Gov. Perry outlined his vision for such reforms in a waiver request that has been languishing before the federal government since April 2008.

  • National Education Standards. The U.S. Department of Education is attempting to coerce states like Texas to suddenly abandon their own locally established curriculum standards in favor of adopting national standards spearheaded by organizations in Washington, D.C. However, adopting such standards, which have not even yet been proposed, would realign the state’s nationally recognized education system to conform to the U.S. Department of Education’s vision for public education. Texas is already ahead of most other states in setting college and career-ready standards in our schools. The citizens of Texas, not the federal government, know what is best for our children. As the federal government continues its sweeping expansion of federal authority from the financial, energy and health care systems, it is now attempting to increase their intrusion into Texas classrooms.
  • Unemployment Stimulus Funds. Strings attached to the unemployment insurance stimulus dollars would have required an unprecedented change in Texas’ definition of unemployment, ultimately increasing the tax burden borne by Texas employers over the long term. Gov. Perry believes that the solution to unemployment is creating jobs and Gov. Perry will continue to work to bring jobs to Texas until every Texan who wants a job has a job.

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Read Related Press Releases, Blog Posts and News Articles about Gov. Perry's Fight against Intrusive Washington Policies

Perry: Over A Month Later, Feds Still Haven't Made Important Changes At Border

Ian Hanchett

Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) said that the federal government still has not made important changes that he suggested over a month ago on Wednesday’s “Your World with Neil Cavuto” on the Fox News Channel.

He charged that the leadership of the U.S. Border Patrol is “failing” their officers because Border Patrol agents are still not “right on the border” even though he informed President Obama of that fact over a month ago. Perry claims he informed President Obama that the Border Patrol was “40, 45 miles” away from the border during their meeting on July 9, and today said “their [the Border Patrol’s] leadership in Washington, DC is failing, from my perspective, because they don't have them right on the border.”

Perry also reported that he is still awaiting clearance from the FAA. Perry reported that he had made a request to allow drones to secure the border on ABC’s “This Week” on July 6. Today, he stated “the FAA will not let us use drones, at this particular point in time ... to look down 24/7 in all types of weather so that we can have these fast response forces move in and make apprehensions. If the FAA would allow that, it would be substantial help.”

Perry went on to address reports that he is considering running for president in 2016, maintaining that his recent travels throughout the country were on behalf of Republican senatorial and gubernatorial candidates.

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Rick Perry, in Switzerland, touts Texas drug courts

Jan. 24, 2014
Austin American-Statesman
By Jonathan Tilove

Gov. Rick Perry said Thursday that he thinks states ought to be able to experiment with drug policy, but that he opposes legalizing or decriminalizing marijuana use in Texas, where he said the use of drug courts to find alternatives to incarceration for low-level offenders has proven successful.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, as part of a panel on the “drugs dilemma” that also included Juan Manuel Santos, the president of Colombia, and former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, Perry said he feared entirely removing the penalties for drug use would send the wrong signal, and cited former Rep. Patrick Kennedy’s recent criticism of President Barack Obama for suggesting that marijuana is no more dangerous than alcohol.

In an interview on MSNBC’s ‘Hardball” on Monday, the former Democratic Rhode Island representative, and the son of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, said that marijuana is different, and far more dangerous, than when the president tried it when he was young, and that legalizing pot would lead to increased use of an “insidious” drug that puts people on “a slow train to nowhere.”

Annan, who said the war on drugs had exacted a horrendous price of its own, asked if it was true that the United States spends more on incarceration than education.

“We don’t spend as much money on incarceration as we do on education in the state of Texas, and that’s a good thing,” Perry said.

Enrique Acevedo, a Mexican journalist and Univision host, who moderated the panel, which was live-streamed, noted that Texas still had one of the highest incarceration rates in the world.

“I haven’t been governor of Texas forever,” Perry said.

“Well, 13 years is a pretty long time,” Acevedo shot back.

Perry said it would not be good for public officials to simply jump in front of a growing “parade” of support for decriminalization, just because the movement appeared to be gaining popularity.

“Did we fight the war on drugs correctly every day? No,” said Perry. “Has the war on terrorism been fought correctly every day? No.”

“But,” he continued, “the point is that after 40 years of the war on drugs, I can’t change what happened in the past. What I can do as the governor of the second largest state in the nation is to implement policies that start us toward a decriminalization and keeps people from going to prison and destroying their lives, and that’s what we’ve done over the last decade. … There are some alternatives without going that big full step and decriminalizing and sending a message to people that it’s OK.”

The visit to Davos in the Swiss Alps represented the governor’s first appearance at the prestigious invitation-only event, which continues through Saturday.

Gov. Perry Visits the Republican Leadership Conference

Governor Perry spoke to the Republican Leadership Conference (RLC) in New Orleans this past Saturday, touting the Texas model of balancing budgets, cutting spending, and keeping taxes low.

Video footage from

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Gov. Perry: 10th Amendment Gives States the Flexibility to Meet Challenges

Thursday, April 12th, 2011

Gov. Rick Perry today emphasized the importance of competition between the states and the need to return to the principles of the 10th Amendment to ensure our nation's future prosperity. The governor spoke at the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) Hatton W. Sumners Distinguished Lecture Series.

"The system our founding fathers devised through the 10th Amendment ensures states have the flexibility to meet challenges in whichever fashion works best for them," Gov. Perry said. "Over the years, the American system has worked exceptionally well, with each state working as its own laboratory and individual engine of innovation and discovery to find innovative solutions to its challenges, motivating other states to remain competitive by coming up with their own versions."

Rather than imposing burdensome mandates and one-size-fits-all policies, the governor noted that Washington should take a page from Texas' playbook, as several other states have done, by limiting the burdensome red tape that strangles innovation in the private sector.

This session, Gov. Perry has called for a renewed emphasis on the 10th Amendment through House Concurrent Resolution 50 and Senate Concurrent Resolution 14, sponsored by Rep. Brandon Creighton and Sen. Dan Patrick. The resolutions claim sovereignty for Texas under the 10th Amendment, and assert that the 10th Amendment limits the scope of federal power to the powers specifically granted by the U.S. Constitution. The resolutions also call for an end to federal mandates on the states that are beyond the scope of the powers delegated to the federal government by the U.S. Constitution. Additionally, these measures call on the U.S. Congress to prohibit or repeal any legislation that directs states to comply with federal edicts under threat of criminal penalties, or that requires states to pass legislation to avoid losing federal funding.

The U.S. Constitution was specifically designed to limit the powers of the federal government, and leave all other powers to the states and to the people. A number of recent federal proposals are outside of the scope of the federal government's constitutionally designated powers and impede the states' right to govern themselves, such as Obamacare, the EPA's takeover of Texas' successful air permitting program, and a misguided amendment to the education jobs bill filed by Rep. Lloyd Doggett in his attempt to require the governor to make assurances in violation of the Texas Constitution.

Established in 1983, NCPA is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy research organization that develops and promotes free-market alternatives to government regulation and control, solving problems in health care, taxes, retirement, small business and the environment through the private sector. The Hatton W. Sumners Distinguished Lecture Series provides nationally and internationally renowned speakers and free market economists a forum to present important ideas to address our nation's challenges.

For more information about NCPA, please visit

State of the State

Governor Perry delivered his State of the State address this week, proposing to consolidate or suspend non-critical state agencies in order to make state government more streamlined and efficient. The governor also outlined his priorities for the 82nd Legislative Session, including balancing the budget without raising taxes, preserving essential services, and strengthening Texas' position as a national economic leader through sound policies. Check out the Governor's entire State of the State address below.

VIDEO- Governor Rick Perry on Fox News Sunday.

If you didn't catch Governor Perry on Fox News Sunday this weekend, you can watch the entire segment right here.

For additional information about Fed Up! media appearances, book tour stops around Texas, and more, visit Check back, and after you've read the book, join the conversation on how we get our country back on track!

On Twitter? Follow @GovernorPerry for updates from Rick Perry himself. Become a fan of Governor Perry on Facebook and join the fight against Washington's overreach!

VIDEO- Texas Governor Rick Perry on Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

If you didn't catch Governor Perry on The Daily Show Monday night, you can watch all three parts right here.



PART 3 (not shown on television)

For additional information about Fed Up! media appearances, book tour stops around Texas, and more, visit Check back, and after you've read the book, join the conversation on how we get our country back on track!

On Twitter? Follow @GovernorPerry for updates from Rick Perry himself. Become a fan of Governor Perry on Facebook and join the fight against Washington's overreach!

Greetings From Recoveryland

November 8, 2010
Joel Kotkin

Where can you go to escape the recession? Try any of these 10 places. Oh, and be prepared to wear red.

Like a massive tornado, the Great Recession up-ended the topography of America. But even as vast parts of the country were laid low, some cities withstood the storm and could emerge even stronger and shinier than before. So, where exactly are these Oz-like destinations along the road to recovery? If you said Kansas, you're not far off. Try Oklahoma. Or Texas. Or Iowa. Not only did the economic twister of the last two years largely spare Tornado Alley, it actually may have helped improve the landscape.

NEWSWEEK has compiled a list of the 10 American cities best situated for the recovery. These are places where the jobs are plentiful, and the pay, given the lower cost of living, buys more than in bigger cities. In other words, places unlike much of the rest of the country. The cities, most of which lie in the red-state territory of America's heartland, fall into three basic groups. There's the Texaplex-Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, and Houston—which has become the No. 1 destination for job-seeking Americans, thanks to a hearty energy sector and a strong spirit of entrepreneurism. There are the New Silicon Valleys—Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; Salt Lake City; and urban northern Virginia—which offer high-paying high-tech jobs and housing prices well below those in coastal California. And then there are the Heartland Honeys—Oklahoma City, Indianapolis, and Des Moines, Iowa—which are enjoying a revival thanks to rising agricultural prices and a shift toward high-end industrial jobs.

Unlike the Sun Belt states and cities along the East and West coasts, these locales not only grew during the boom of the mid-2000s, they suffered least in the Great Recession. The fact that they are mostly in red states should give the newly ascendant GOP comfort as it tries to deliver on its election-year promise to right the economy. That isn’t to say all the blue states will remain weather-beaten. Wall Street, heady with cheap money, has sparked a return to opulence. And the strong demand for high-tech products and services will likely keep places like Boston, San Francisco, and San Diego from devolving into fancy versions of Detroit. Yet given the results of last week's election and the increasing odds against another bailout of state governments, the near-broke and highly regulated blue states will be hard-pressed to generate much new employment.

Of course, not everyone living in NEWSWEEK's Top 10 cities has avoided the heartache. And the continued slow pace of the economic recovery could hamper expansion even in the most-favored cities. If energy tanks as a result of a renewed global slowdown, it could hurt Texas and Oklahoma; dropping agricultural prices would hit some of the Heartland Honeys hard. But relatively—and that is the operative word in this tough economy—our 10 cities should fare better than most anywhere in America. And they could offer us a road map for what the nation’s economy will look like once the dust settles.


For sheer economic promise, no place beats Texas. Though the Lone Star State's growth slowed during the recession, it didn't suffer nearly as dramatically as the rest of the country. Businesses have been flocking to Texas for a generation, and that trend is unlikely to slow soon. Texas now has more Fortune 500 companies—58—than any other state, including longtime corporate powerhouse New York.

Austin boasted the strongest job growth in NEWSWEEK's Top 10, both last year and over the decade. Home to the state capital and the ever-expanding University of Texas, the city is arguably the best-positioned of the nation’s emerging tech centers. It enjoys good private-sector growth, both from an expanding roster of homegrown firms and outside companies, including an increasing array of multinationals such as Samsung, Nokia, Siemens, and Fujitsu.

Yet Austin's newfound prosperity isn't simply a product of its university culture or its synergetic collection of technology firms. Its success owes a great deal to simply being in Texas—a state itching to eclipse its historic archrival, the increasingly troubled California. Indeed, Texas is becoming to the Golden State what Arizona, Nevada, and Oregon were in the last decade: a refuge for workers and companies fed up with California's high unemployment, cost of living, and dysfunctional state government.

The Texas economy has benefited from widening diversification. Houston has a robust energy business and medical-services industry, and thriving international trade—all long-term growth areas. Dallas enjoys an expanding tech sector and well-developed business-service industries tied to a powerful corporate base. San Antonio has a strong military connection and an expanding manufacturing capacity, and it is a key locale for the growing Latino marketplace. What's more, Texas offers pro-business policies and relatively low taxes, and the physical infrastructure in the cities is generally as good or better than in many East and West coast metropolitan areas.

People are voting with their feet. All four Texas cities are enjoying strong immigration from the rest of the country and abroad. Houston and Dallas have higher rates of immigration than Chicago, and if the job picture stays the same, those cities could someday rival New York and Los Angeles in terms of ethnic diversity.


Although Massachusetts and California are lauded as the places "where the brains are," neither ranked high in the growth of tech jobs over the past decade. More important is where the brains are headed.

A lot of them are going to North Carolina, Virginia, and Utah. The population of Raleigh-Durham grew faster than any major U.S. metropolitan area during the recession, and the city ranked third on NEWSWEEK's list in terms of job growth over the last decade. To the north, in Virginia, lies another Silicon Valley wannabe, stretching across Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax counties. And then there's Salt Lake City and its environs, buoyed by the arrival of such big names as Adobe, Twitter, and Electronic Arts. The Greater Salt Lake region, which follows the Wasatch Mountains from Provo to Ogden, has much to attract tech companies: short commutes, decent public schools, spectacular nearby recreation, and, perhaps most important, affordable housing. Roughly 75 percent of households in Salt Lake can afford a median-priced house, as compared with 45 percent in Silicon Valley and roughly half that in New York City and San Francisco. The cost advantages of cities like Salt Lake and the other high-tech hubs are expected to prove especially attractive to millennials—the generation born after 1982—as they begin forming families and buying homes en masse.

None of these Silicon Valleys may ever reach the critical mass of the real thing in California, but they will become increasingly more effective competitors and take an expanding market share of the nation’s technology business.


The oft-ignored center of the country boasts a thriving economy that seems poised for further expansion. The region is well positioned to take advantage of growing markets for agricultural commodities and farm machinery in fast-growing countries such as India and China. The Great Plains and parts of the southern Midwest have also attracted new investments in manufacturing, both from domestic and foreign firms.

Having largely missed out on the housing bubble, the region also avoided the hangover. As a result, after watching generation after generation move away, several heartland cities are enjoying a noticeable uptick in domestic migration as well as immigration. During the Great Depression, it was Oklahomans who moved to California to escape the Dust Bowl. Now there are considerably more people moving from California to Oklahoma than the other way around.

Indianapolis, once written off as "Indiana no-place," is one emerging hotspot. The area’s housing affordability now stands at a remarkable 90-plus percent. Although the recession has hit some of Indiana's manufacturing-oriented northwest corner, over the past decade Indianapolis's population grew at a rate 50 percent greater than the national average, notes urban analyst Aaron Renn. Much of this success is due to an aggressively pro-business attitude that promotes growing clusters such as life sciences, motor sports, and Internet marketing.

Oklahoma City and Des Moines have also enjoyed steady growth in both jobs and net migrants over the past decade. Des Moines was recently rated the No. 1 spot in the country for business and careers by Forbes magazine, thanks to a surging agricultural sector and strength in the business-services segment. And Oklahoma City—which enjoys low unemployment as a result of its steadily growing energy and aerospace sectors—has been ranked among the best job markets for young people, ahead of Dallas, Seattle, and even New York (having Kevin Durant lead the NBA's Oklahoma City Thunder for the foreseeable future can only improve the buzz).

Of course, none of the cities in NEWSWEEK's Top 10 list competes right now with New York, Chicago, or L.A. in terms of art, culture, and urban amenities, which tend to get noticed by journalists and casual travelers. But once upon a time, all those great cities were also seen as cultural backwaters. And in the coming decades, as more people move in and open restaurants, museums, and sports arenas, who’s to say Oklahoma City can’t be Oz?

Kotkin is a Distinguished Presidential Fellow in urban futures at Chapman University in Orange, Calif., and an adjunct fellow with the London-based Legatum Institute. Research was provided by Praxis Strategy Group and Zina Klapper.

Brand New TV Ad: "Clear Choice"

Texans for Rick Perry today launched a new 30 second TV ad called “Clear Choice.”

“Campaigns are about choices, and Texas voters have a clear choice in this election,” said Texans for Rick Perry spokesman Mark Miner. “Gov. Rick Perry’s proven leadership and Texas values have made Texas a model for the rest of the nation, and Gov. Perry will continue to travel the state during these final days speaking directly to voters and promoting positive conservative principles of low taxes, limited government and personal liberty.”

On Twitter? Follow @GovernorPerry for updates from Rick Perry himself, @GovPerry2010 for updates from the campaign, and become a fan of Governor Perry on Facebook to stay up to date on the latest campaign news.

See below for the script for “Clear Choice.”

“Clear Choice” script

“Elections are about choices. In this election, there is a clear choice.”

Text: Governor Rick Perry

“As your governor I’ll continue to fight to keep spending in check.”

“A balanced budget with no new taxes.”

“And I’ll keep my focus on new jobs…”

Text: New Jobs

“… and stronger schools…”

Text: Stronger Schools

“… and securing our border.”

Text: Securing Our Border

“And I’m going to keep fighting Washington, standing up for you…”

“…protecting states’ rights…”

Text: Protecting States’ Rights

“… and providing strong fiscally responsible leadership.”

Text: Governor Rick Perry

“I’d appreciate your support, and I ask for your vote.”

Raconteur Media Company in Austin, TX designed, develops and maintains for Texans for Rick Perry.