Governor Rick Perry’s strategy to revive his campaign in South Carolina means he must attack the frontrunner, former Massachussets governor Mitt Romney.
But as Jason Embry of the Austin American-Statesman noted, as the dust settled from Tuesday’s primary in New Hampshire, Perry’s strategy of calling Romney a “vulture capitalist” instead of a venture capitalist is the same sort of argument a Democrat might make, which, in a race where Perry likes to say that he’s the “true conservative,” is not sitting well with true conservatives.
That includes Fox News host Sean Hannity, who had Perry on for an unusually robust conversation Tuesday night.
“Remember when Perry could waltz onto a show like Hannity’s and breeze his way through an easy, friendly, hospitable interview — the whole reason why he hardly goes on other networks at all?,” Embry wrote.
Instead, here’s some of what Hannity suggested during Perry’s time on-air:
You said — talking about [Romney’s] days at Bain Capital, Bain Capital compared companies like that, they leave the carcasses behind. Bain is a vulture capital company. They walked into South Carolina, a company like Gaffney. They picked the bones clean of those people who lost their jobs in the same mill. You say, rather than restructure jobs, they’re trying to make money. Ethics get thrown out the door. They make as much money as they can in a hurry.
You know, when I hear that, it almost sounds like “Occupy Wall Street.” It doesn’t sound like somebody that is governing the state of Texas as a conservative.
At the decidedly unconservative Salon, Alex Pareene gleefully suggested Perry “has basically become a communist,” and that a talking point like “vulture capitalism” is no less than “an attack on successful corporate restructuring!”
Pareene also rounded up five right-leaning reactions to the anti-Romney rhetoric (most of them were less focused on Perry and more upset with Newt Gingrich, who has gone after Romney in the same fashion.) Phil Klein at the Washington Examiner wrote that criticizing Romney’s successful business career i s “ nothing short of disgraceful behavior,” while the Club For Growth said in a press release that “Attacking Governor Romney for participating in free-market capitalism is just beyond the pale for any purported ‘Reagan Conservative.’”
Watch Perry on Hannity: