Rick Perry: GOP primary voters are like everyone else

Republican presidential candidate Texas Gov. Rick Perry gestures during a Republican presidential debate Monday, Sept. 12, 2011, in Tampa, Fla.
AP Photo/Mike Carlson
AP Photo/Mike Carlson

Republican voters have had a positive response to Texas Gov. Rick Perry's presidential bid so far, even as some Republicans criticize the governor for controversial remarks on issues like Social Security. That's because Republicans are tired of political correctness, Perry says -- just like all Americans.

"I think Republican primary voters are not really a lot different than Americans in general," Perry said interview with Time magazine. "They are very concerned about where this country finds itself economically. They know that we are off-track, that for two-plus years we've had an Administration that has been doing an experiment with the American economy and it's failed miserably, and I think people are fearful. And they're looking for someone whom they can be excited about."

Even as he advances in the race for the GOP presidential nomination, Perry said he feels no pressure to ratchet down his rhetoric -- even when it comes to calling President Obama's administration socialist.

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"I still believe they are socialist," he said. "Their policies prove that almost daily."

Perry said he was comfortable calling Social Security a "Ponzi scheme" because "the rhetoric I have used was both descriptive and spot on... There may be someone who is an established Republican who circulates in the cocktail circuit that would find some of my rhetoric to be inflammatory or what have you, but I'm really talking to the American citizen out there."

While his controversial rhetoric seems to be resonating with GOP voters,not all Tea Partiers warmed up to Perry immediately. "The perfect candidate that everyone ever has agreed with -- I'm still waiting for that man or woman to show up," the governor said.