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GOP Candidates Should Have Defended Perry Against Liberal Smear

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.

In politics, character does and should count. 

For instance, character can be demonstrated in any number of ways including during a Republican presidential primary process.  Hypothetically, let’s imagine that one Republican candidate was just purposely and viciously smeared with the indelible charge of “racist” by a  left-leaning “news” organization.  Obviously, should such a deliberate, heinous, and patently false charge be leveled against such candidate, the other candidates running for the nomination would instantly put aside all differences and rush to the side of their defamed colleague.

            Why?  Because character does count and the Republicans running for president would most certainly understand that such a despicable falsehood aimed at one of them by the propagandists for the far-left is aimed at all of them.  More than that, they would understand that should they not stand shoulder to shoulder with their GOP opponent and instead leave the charge unanswered, they would become willing accomplices to the liberals escalating campaign of class-warfare and divisive and poisonous rhetoric.

            So naturally, the other candidates would drop everything and speak with one voice in the defense of their wronged colleague.

            Well…at least imaginary Republicans in a hypothetical case would do so.  In real life, Republicans not only don’t defend a falsely-charged colleague, but  three of them shamefully piled-on to further their own personal ambitions.

            Why?  Because “character,” “honor,” and “integrity,” caught the last train out of Dodge a long time ago.

            Unfortunately, as many people now know, The Washington Post officially hit rock bottom and removed all pretense of being an unbiased newspaper with a truly disgusting front-page story on Texas governor Rick Perry which worked overtime to paint him as a racist by twisting a series of clouded, unrelated, and anonymous partial memories about something which was flat-out totally unrelated to Perry.  They sent a team of reporters (one hopes they are using as many reporters to investigate “Fast and Furious” and Solyndra) to Texas and then breathlessly “reported ” -- using over 3,200 words -- that there was a rock on some property once leased by the Perry family which had an offensive word written on it.

            The Post acknowledges that the painted rock was there years before Rick Perry walked the land and that he had nothing to do with it being there.  Governor Perry then stated that right after his family leased that parcel of land in the early 1980’s and as soon as they saw the rock with the offending word, that his father painted over it immediately.

            End of story for any ethical news organization and for Americans struggling to provide for their families who have more critical issues to worry about.

            But nowhere near the end of the story for the far-left and certain compromised reporters and editors in the mainstream media who play the race-card every single presidential election cycle against the Republican party.

            Every cycle the Democrats or their allies in the media seek to destroy the reputation of a Republican candidate or the GOP as a whole with a trumped-up charge of racism.  And every cycle they get away with it.

            All Republicans know this.  Every single candidate running against Mr. Perry knows this.  Just as they know that in the art of the politics of personal destruction, there is almost nothing worse, more damaging, or more lingering than the false charge of racism.

            They knew that and still did nothing.  Not only did they not rally to Perry’s side to denounce The Washington Post and its repulsive story, Herman Cain, Mitt Romney,and Rick Santorum transparently tried to use this perennial far-left smear to feather their own nests.

            Like Rick Perry or not, he should have been vigorously defended against this obscene attack.  He was not.

            Peggy Noonan once wrote a very moving and telling book about Ronald Reagan titled, “When Character Was King.”  Those Republican candidates who abandoned Perry or worse in the face of this bogus attack would do well to pick up a copy.

            Character does count and the voters are paying attention.

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