Earlier this week, the Republicans who have so far tossed their hats in the ring, seeking their party’s nomination for President in the 2012 election, were debating on national television, sponsored by the so-called “Tea Party.”
Along the way, Minnesota congresswoman, Michele Bachmann, took a swipe at Texas governor, Rick Perry, for his executive order requiring 11 and 12-year-old Texas girls to be vaccinated against human papillomavirus (HPV), which can cause cervical cancer. Among her accusations was that such a decision appeared to be motivated by Perry’s connection to Merck Pharmaceuticals, a major Perry contributor, which manufactures the vaccine.
At this, Perry claimed that Merck had only contributed $5,000 to one of his gubernatorial campaigns, adding: “I raised $30 million, and if you’re saying that I can be bought for $5,000, I’m offended.”
If Bachmann inflated her claim regarding Merck’s contributions to Perry, the governor deflated his. When in fact, Merck has contributed far in excess of $5,000 to Perry campaigns, but not as much as Bachmann alleged. That sounds like a couple of competing politicians all right, where factual distortion tends to be the rule, rather than the exception.
That, however, wasn’t what caught my ear. As in the proverbial “Are you still beating your