12 Things Texans Know About Gov. Rick Perry That You Should, Too

Since 2006, Texas Gov. Rick Perry has been boosting his conservative credentials, and now we know why -- he wants to be president. During this year's legislative session alone, Perry has taken on immigration, sanctuary cities, voter ID, women's reproductive issues, airport security, and, of course, the Obama administration, all national issues he can talk about in a national campaign.

Outside his home state, Perry might best be known for toying with the idea of secession. During the rise of the tea party, Perry told supporters at a rally in April, 2009, "We've got a great union. There's absolutely no reason to dissolve it. But if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, who knows what may come of that." We're still not sure if Perry wants to run for president of the United States or president of the Republic of Texas.

Perry's disdain for the media rivals that of Sarah Palin, as evidenced by his avoiding reporters, eschewing televised debates, and even refusing to meet with the state's editorial boards during the last gubernatorial election. Unfortunately for the governor, he's going to need the media if he wants to run on a national platform. And he's never seen anything like the Washington press corps.

As momentum builds behind Perry's potential run at the White House in 2012, the national press is sure to delve deeper into his record. As that process begins, here's a list of things Texans know about Rick Perry that the national political audience should know, too.

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Eileen Smith is the editor of the satirical political blog In the Pink Texas, and a guest columnist at the Texas Observer. She lives in Austin.

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