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The Passion of the Kinky

How the Kinkster did, then didn't, endorse Perry

By Richard Whittaker, 1:48PM, Mon. Aug. 29, 2011

Kinky Friedman: Likes Rick Perry so much, he ran against him in 2006 and considered doing it again in 2010
Kinky Friedman: Likes Rick Perry so much, he ran against him in 2006 and considered doing it again in 2010
Photo by Jana Birchum

When we heard that Kinky Friedman was getting back into political punditry, we had one thought: What's he selling now? Whatever it was, seems someone isn't buying, because he is backing away from last week's headline-grabbing endorsement of Gov. Rick Perry for president.

Last week Friedman had a column in The Daily Beast (politics' answer to E! News) entitled "Kinky for Perry," raving about why he "wants to live in Rick Perry's America."

Yes, this is the same Kinky Friedman that challenged Perry for governor in 2006 as an independent, then planned the same for 2010 as a Democrat. The same Kinky Friedman that once blathered, "I was a Democrat before you were born." The same Kinky Friedman who said that "my heroes have always been Democrats" and opposes the death penalty is now backing the pro-execution Republican governor.

Showing his world-renowned policy acumen, Friedman swallowed the Perry play book whole and claimed, "The Lone Star State is booming." Of course, facts get in the way: "Unemployment is lower than the vast majority of the other states," he waffled, ignoring the fact that, since the Texas unemployment rate is the 27th highest in the nation, neither 'vast' nor 'majority' works here.

Similarly, Friedman argues that "the last time I checked, Texas is kicking in a hell of a lot of the U.S. GDP." Well, not surprising for the second biggest state in the union, but let's fact check that. According to the US Department of Commerce, Texas pulled in $1.2 trillion in 2010, putting it second behind California ($1.9 trillion) and only just ahead of the much smaller New York state ($1.16 trillion.) We'll wait for Friedman to give similar praise for governor Edmund Brown of California and Andrew Cuomo of New York.

Friedman goes on to call "Perry to be a true friend of Israel." Might want to tread carefully there, Kinkster, since Goodhair has been linked to the New Apostolic Reformation, a fundamentalist Biblical literalist movement with questionable intentions towards Israel. Perry's prayer partners at his day of fasting campaign launch the Response included groups like the International House of Prayer, which wants Jews to convert so Armageddon will come sooner.

Of course Kinky has always had a weather eye towards whatever is best for Kinky. So now that he has further over-extended his long-expired 15 minutes of fame, he has started back-pedaling. The Houston Chronicle reports that he called in to a Houston radio show to say that just because he thinks Perry should be president, that doesn't mean he thinks anyone should think that he's saying Perry should be president. The Huffington Post reports that Friedman told them "I don't exactly endorse people."

So, one of two things: One, Kinky doesn't understand what 'endorse' means or, two, he's realized that his last remaining fans are pretty unimpressed by his non-endorsing endorsement.

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