Governor Rick Perry is making a final push for voters in Iowa before Tuesday’s presidential caucuses. KERA’s BJ Austin says the Governor is taking aim at his Republican rivals as he lags in the polls.
The latest CNN-ORC International poll puts Governor Perry fifth in Iowa, at 11% – behind Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, and New Gingrich.
At the Smokey Row Cafe and Soda Shop in Oskaloosa, Iowa Perry downplayed the polls and told a generally friendly crowd he’s the one to make real change.
Perry: Listen, I got great respect for those so-called front runners -- seems like they change every week during this Iowa race. But if we replace a Democrat insider with a Republican insider, anyone think we’re going to get anything different out of Washington DC?
Oskaloosa resident Pearl Raatz says Rick Perry is the candidate for her.
Raatz: I think Rick Perry is the man for the job. I really do. I like his policies, and I particularly like that he stands for God, because if we don’t have God in our situation, nobody’s going to be able to do it.
Paul Fynaardt says he likes Rick Perry – has from the start -- and supports the Governor’s positions on fiscal and social issues.
Fynaardt: Yeah, oh you bet, 100 percent. But we’ve got to have somebody who can beat Obama. And I’m not sure he can do it.
Will Perry get his caucus vote?
Fynaardt: Well, I ain’t made up my mind yet. I’ve got another guy in mind, too. That’s Romney. He’s as liberal as you get. But I think he can beat Obama, and that’s, that’s the deal.
Iowa is the first “test” for presidential candidates, and where they place sometimes can make or break a campaign. So far candidates and political organizations have spent 12.5 million dollars on political advertising in Iowa. The caucuses are Tuesday.