Perry Does A Palin Impersonation With Fumbled Debate Answer

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There were tons of softball questions at the third GOP debate in 15 days on Thursday. "Do you think Obama is a socialist?" was t-balled (er tea-balled) for Mitt Romney by Megyn Kelly.

When it's a Fox News "debate" is more of a two hour showcase for Republican mythology (i.e. tax cuts solve everything). Where are the tough questions? That's too mainstream for Fox. One wet kiss went to Rick Perry on health care in his state. Texas has the highest rate of uninsured in the nation. It ranks dead last. And Perry being the state's three-time governor, strangely, has blamed the federal government for his states problems vying for a job on the federal level so he can fix (wait for it) Texas' problems. (But they're not really problems because people are moving to Texas.)

Chris Wallace's question to Perry was, "So the question is, isn't Texas' uninsured problem because of decisions made by Texas?"

Now if Perry were smart (he isn't) he'd be able to (ahem) parry this question into something awesome about Texas. Like: "Chris, in Texas we love freedom." And POW the crowd would cheer like it's execution number 334!

But he didn't.

Perry's answer: "Well, I disagree with your analysis there, because we've had a request in for the federal government so that we could have a Medicaid waiver for years. And the federal government has stopped us from having that Medicaid waiver. Allowing the state of Texas, or for that matter the other states that we're making reference to here, that have waivers give them more options to be able to give the options, there's a menu of options that we could have, just like Jon Huntsman talked about. That is how we go forward with our health care."

Huh? "That have waivers give them more options to be able to give the options, there's a menu of options that we could have?"

Hear that? That's the sound of a poll numbers sinking for the A&M D-student in the race.

Full transcript of the video after the jump.

WALLACE: Governor Perry, I now have a question for you. Texas has the most uninsured residents of any state in the country, 25 percent.

In the last debate, you blamed it on restrictions imposed by the federal government. But we checked about that, sir, in fact the feds treat Texas like they do all the other big states. On its own, on its own, Texas has imposed some of the toughest eligibility rules for Medicaid of any state in the country. In fact, you rank 49th in Medicaid coverage of low income residents.

So the question is, isn't Texas' uninsured problem because of decisions made by Texas?

PERRY: Well, I disagree with your analysis there, because we've had a request in for the federal government so that we could have a Medicaid waiver for years. And the federal government has stopped us from having that Medicaid waiver. Allowing the state of Texas, or for that matter the other states that we're making reference to here, that have waivers give them more options to be able to give the options, there's a menu of options that we could have, just like Jon Huntsman talked about. That is how we go forward with our health care.

Each state deciding how they're going to deliver that health care.

Not one size fits all. And I think this whole concept of not allowing the states to come up with the best ideas about how to deliver health care in their state. And the fact is, people continue to move to the state of Texas. Some of the highest rates in the country, because we've created a state where opportunity is very much the word of the day there, if you will, for finding work and what have you.

And our health care is part of that. Our education is part of that. And we are proud of what we put together in the state of Texas.

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