Rick Perry Confronts Obama

City and State to Issue Proclamations to Texas Motor SpeedwayIn a bold move, Texas Governor Rick Perry has declined an official White House offer to greet President Obama when he lands at Austin’s airport tomorrow.  Perry, who has been an open critic of Obama’s policy for handling the US-Mexico border, wrote to the President asking for a more “substantive meeting”.  In the letter, Perry claims that a “quick handshake” on the tarmac of Austin’s airport won’t allow for a meaningful discussion about the crisis occurring on the US-Mexico border.  Rather, he would like to have a sit-down with the President while he’s in Texas for a two-day trip to attend Democratic fundraisers in Dallas and Austin.  Yesterday, White House press secretary Josh Earnest downplayed criticism that Obama would be raising money instead of visiting the border, claiming that the President isn’t worried about the “optics” of the trip.

White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett apparently responded to Perry’s letter, inviting the Governor to a roundtable discussion on the border issue with local officials and faith leaders.  Back in 2012, Perry attempted to run for President, although he never got very far in the primaries.  However, there’s been talk of him giving it another run in the upcoming 2016 Presidential Election.  In the buildup to this, Perry has criticised the Obama Administration due to the recent influx of children trying to enter the US illegally along the border.  On Sunday, Perry claimed that Obama isn’t “personally invested” in solving the issue, accusing him of not caring whether or not America’s southern border is secure.  White House press secretary Josh Earnest says that the Governor is simply “playing politics”, and that he should rather work to support significant immigration reform.  While the Democratic and Republican parties disagree on how immigration should be handled, both sides agree that it needs to be reformed dramatically.  Even if Obama and the Democrats probably disagree on how it should be reformed, it seems obvious that they would benefit from a discussion with Rick Perry, the Governor of a state that sees so much illegal immigration.