Rick Perry Facing Stiff Challenge from "Dick Perry" in Arizona

Protest candidate and Tucson music legend Al "Dick" Perry has better name placement on the Arizona ballot than the Texas governor.
Thu January 12, 2012 3:32 am
Flickr | Gage Skidmore

It probably doesn't matter all that much at this point, but the state of Arizona set the order of its presidential primary ballot Tuesday, and Rick Perry's representative, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio (above, appearing with the governor in Iowa), didn't fare well in the random drawing.

Not only did Rick Perry end up way down on the ballot at number seventeen, but there's a candidate much higher—fourth—named "Dick Perry." Al "Dick" Perry, more specifically.

“Who is that?” Arpaio asked asked Jim Nintzel of Tucson Weekly . “I don’t know who that is. I know there’s only one of me.”

Clearly Sheriff Joe is not a connoisseur of Arizona music. Known to some as the "unofficial mayor of Tucson," Al Perry is a veteran "cowpunk" rocker who's as well known in his hometown as somebody like Alejandro Escovedo is in Austin.

He's one of ten candidates running as part of  Tucson Weekly 's Project White House 2012 , "a reality journalism competition" to encourage ordinary citizens to take part in the process. Arizona has no filing fee to run for president (in Texas, it's $2,500 for Democrats and $5,000 for Republicans), and just a two-page form.

“I hope that doesn’t confuse our voters,” Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett told Nintzel on Tuesday. “I think that people who support Rick Perry will vote for Rick Perry and hopefully they’ll notice the distinction between Rick Perry and Al ‘Dick’ Perry.” 

As you can see from the paperwork below, the musician's full name is in fact "Allan Richard Perry." When he filed in December, he told Nintzel that having the same last name as Rick might save him money on campaign t-shirts, while Nintzel made the exact opposite statement as Secretary of State Bennett,  deadpanning that "Perry does need to worry that some of his supporters might mistakenly vote for the Texas governor if they don't read the ballot carefully."

In an interview with SLIT music fanzine, Perry said "Sheriff Joe" and other conservative Arizona politicians were influential on him, though not as "a source of inspiration, but rather a source of comedy. They show what NOT to do."

He also said that his campaign slogan would be, "Don't vote for Rick! Vote for a Dick!"

(Images via SLIT music fanzine)

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