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CNN "Lou Dobbs Tonight" - Transcript

Interview

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Up next, Republicans hoping to capitalize on conservative voter power and dissatisfaction with the Democratic parties. What does that mean for one governor from the state of Texas, Governor Rick Perry? We'll find out here, next.

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DOBBS: Conservative voting power can make the difference at upcoming key elections across the country. Here comes November 3rd. A new Gallup poll shows the number of Americans as describing themselves as conservative outnumber both moderates and liberals in this country. The trend could benefit Texas Governor Rick Perry. He's caught up in a tough primary battle to remain his party's electorate. Governor Perry joins us here now. Good to have you with us. Are you surprised by that poll, the Gallup poll showing conservatives overwhelming both moderates and liberals?

GOV. RICK PERRY (R), TEXAS: No, it doesn't necessarily surprise me. We go back and forth in this country, back and forth, hoping change gets people's attention and then we look at policies and people go, wait a minute, that wasn't the hope --

DOBBS: Need a little more change.

PERRY: The change we were hoping for. It's out there and people are looking for folks to stand up and say, here's what I believe in, here's what I'm going to do, or to have a record to look at.

DOBBS: You say Texans are so fed up with big government that the state may want to succeed. The federal government certainly hasn't become any smaller. What do you think about the necessity of succession?

PERRY: I don't think that's exactly the quote that I made. But let's just say that people are fed up with big government. There is a reason that Republicans are not in power in Washington, D.C. a lot of folks put their hands up and say, listen, elect me and I want to go be a Republican and then they went up and they voted like Democrats. And people kicked them out. People are fed up with government spending our kids' future. These $1 trillion deficits are scaring people. Health care bills that have $1 trillion attachments to them, people are just fed up with that.

DOBBS: You and Kay Bailey Hutchison are tied in a -- statistically tied in a recent Rasmussen poll. What's your plan to win the primary?

PERRY: I just run on my record. When you look at a state that's got 1,000 a people a day moving to it, a place with more than fortune 500 companies, inarguably Texas is the envy of the other 49 states economically. I'll put that record up against anybody.

DOBBS: You have five patrolled ports of entry into the state, as you know. Do you think homeland security Janet Napolitano is doing enough to secure the borders? And we'll limit that just to the state of Texas.

PERRY: And neither did the previous homeland security director.

DOBBS: Michael Chertoff.

PERRY: Neither one are doing enough. We've asked this administration for 1,000 National Guard troops to come, put boots on the ground. We haven't gotten an answer. There's a conflict between the department of defense and homeland security about who's going to pay for it. I don't care who's going to pay for it, just get the troops on the ground. Let's use the technology available. Why not fly predator drones up and down that border region. They're training drones anyway. They're practicing for the real deal. Let's use them, take that data, use it to help on our homeland security.

DOBBS: What's the number one issue for the state of Texas in the next five to ten years? And what are you doing about it?

PERRY: Making sure we keep the economy going. There's nothing more important than any governor does. I like to see states compete against states. So keeping that economic climate very positive in the state of Texas so that people know they can keep more of their money, they can have the type of quality of life, they can have the freedoms that they desire. If states get focused on the tenth amendment, if we continue to make Texas a place where people want to live, obviously, when there's 1,000 a day coming there, there's a reason for it, and it's the economy, stupid.

DOBBS: All right. Well, we're going end to with you calling me stupid. Governor, good to have you with us.

PERRY: Good, Lou. DOBBS: Governor Rick Perry, good to have you here.

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