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The Midday Brief: Sept. 23, 2011

Your afternoon reading: more negative marks for Perry's debate performance; Perry says country not looking for "smoothest debater"; Romney leading endorsement race

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Your afternoon reading:

  • "Gov. Rick Perry quickly shot to the top of the Republican field after joining the presidential race last month, but his first three debate performances have dispelled any notion that he will easily win the nomination." — Debate performances slow Perry’s momentum, Postcards
  • "With nine candidates on the stage, and answers restricted to one minute, it’s hard to really show your stuff. And two of the candidates—Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney—did provide respectable performances. But no front-runner in a presidential field has ever, we imagine, had as weak a showing as Rick Perry. It was close to a disqualifying two hours for him. And Mitt Romney remains, when all is said and done, a technocratic management consultant whose one term as governor produced Romneycare. He could rise to the occasion as president. Or not." — Special Editorial: Yikes, The Weekly Standard
  • "In their book 'The Party Decides: Presidential Nominations Before and After Reform,' the political scientists Marty Cohen, David Karol, Hans Noel and John Zaller find that endorsements — not polls, fund-raising numbers or media hits — are the best early indicators of success in the presidential primaries.  By that standard, Mitt Romney is the front-runner for the Republican nomination, with Rick Perry not far behind, but the other candidates having little chance." — Romney Leads Endorsement Race, FiveThirtyEight
  • "Sen. Florence Shapiro said this week she'd retire from the Texas Senate in 2013, then move on to a job with an education company. Shapiro, a Plano Republican and longtime head of the Senate Education Committee, didn't say which company. And that's had some political and education policy junkies wondering. Could it be Pearson, which creates and scores Texas' standardized tests like the TAKS? Or one of the many K-12 or higher education ventures owned by Dallas entrepreneur Randy Best?" — Shapiro: No decision yet on which education company she'll work for, Trail Blazers

New in The Texas Tribune:

  • "Welcome to the Rick Perry pile-on. After his relatively lackluster debate performance Thursday night, the conservative political pundit class has basically concluded that the Texas governor is not yet ready for prime-time. … On Friday, Perry implicitly acknowledged that debating isn't his strongest skill. In a speech at the Conservate Political Action Conference in Orlando, Perry said his record as governor is more important than his ability to take questions on live television. 'It’s not who is the slickest candidate or the smootheset debater that we need to elect,' Perry said. 'We need to elect the candidate with the best record and the best vision for this country.'" — After Third Debate, It's a Perry Pile-On
  • "Despite more details from the Obama administration today about how it would exempt states from complying with the law's signature requirements, the Texas Education Agency has yet to decide whether it will apply for a waiver on federal accountability requirements under the 2001 act." — Texas Still Undecided On No Child Left Behind Waiver
  • "We are less than 24 hours away from the first-ever Texas Tribune Festival. It would be a wicked understatement to say we're excited." — T-Squared: Fest Foot Forward

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