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October 28. 2011 1:18PM

Gov. Perry files for primary citing record of fostering job growth


Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks at the Cornerstone Action Steward of the Family Awards dinner at in Manchester on Friday night. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)

CONCORD — Texas Gov. Rick Perry touted his job-creation credentials Friday while seeking a new job for himself, that of President.

The Republican visited Concord in the morning to file for the New Hampshire Presidential Primary. He spoke about his Cut, Balance and Grow tax plan and said New Hampshire would become a beacon for jobs if it passed a right-to-work law.

“This place will be an absolute job-creation machine,” he said.

On Friday evening, Perry told social conservatives in Manchester he has consistently been a pro-life governor and “children need to be raised in a loving home by a mother and a father.”

Perry visited New Hampshire the same day as two rivals, fellow Texan Ron Paul and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Romney told reporters he was rooting for the St. Louis Cardinals in game seven of Friday's World Series. Perry received scant applause when he mentioned his home-state Texas Rangers at the Cornerstone Action annual banquet at the Radisson in downtown Manchester.

Applause was sustained when he mentioned Bedford resident Chris Carpenter, who pitched for the Cardinals Friday night.

His Cornerstone speech left several people impressed.

“If he could speak like that in front of every American, he'd win. It's actually the first time I've been impressed with him,” said Paul Thoman, a Nashua engineer.

Perry seemed as comfortable as a preacher in front of a familiar congregation.

He joked about snow and quoted Proverbs. He called previous speakers by their first names. He spoke quietly at times, forcefully at others.

He dramatically pulled his postcard-sized tax return out of his breast pocket and joked that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner could fill it out.

He spoke about family and the economy, sometimes combining the two.

“American families shouldn't have to toil more because Washington refuses to spend less,” Perry said. “Tax policy in America shouldn't play a role in breaking apart American families.”

Thoman said Perry doesn't do well at debates, but he doesn't know how else Perry can get his message to voters.

But Diane Martin, a retired international tax accountant from Hampton Falls, said Republicans are silly to sign up for so many debates.

“I'd like to see him (Perry) more in New Hampshire. I'd like to see him more everywhere,” she said.

Bill Smith, a pro-life activist from Atkinson, said Perry has both money and government experience.

“He's the only one who can keep Romney from getting the nomination,” Smith said.

On Friday morning, Perry promised to cut taxes with the flat-tax plan he unveiled this week. He also promised to create jobs and cut government regulations that he said stifle the economy.

“All these regulations are strangling job creation in America,” Perry said.

“We have to send a message to entrepreneurs that you are going to have the confidence that we're not going to over-tax you, we're not going to over-regulate you, and we'll get Washington out of the way.”

Perry, who has said he thinks too many presidential debates are being scheduled, said he plans to continue to compete on the stage.

“I might get to be a good debater before all this is over,” he said.

Video: Perry sits down with New Hampshire Union Leader


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