As America has on so many past Memorial Days, we observe today’s holiday with troops in harm’s way in combat zones overseas. As has always been the case our military is serving with distinction and bringing honor to our nation.
Whether it’s an Army PFC standing guard duty or a member of the team who brought Osama Bin Laden to justice, our troops have no equal in terms of devotion, courage and professionalism. As a result, our nation should have no peer in the way we honor the fallen.
Governor Perry delivered his State of the State address this week, proposing to consolidate or suspend non-critical state agencies in order to make state government more streamlined and efficient. The governor also outlined his priorities for the 82nd Legislative Session, including balancing the budget without raising taxes, preserving essential services, and strengthening Texas' position as a national economic leader through sound policies. Check out the Governor's entire State of the State address below.
Join over 100 groups in supporting Gov. Perry for re-election
HOUSTON – Today Gov. Rick Perry received the endorsement of former President George H.W. Bush and former First Lady Barbara Bush for the general election. They were joined by representatives from more than 100 organizations and hundreds of leaders who have endorsed Gov. Perry’s re-election, highlighting his diverse, statewide support, which represents millions of Texans.
“Gov. Perry’s leadership and proven track record is an essential component in keeping Texas a national leader in job creation,” said former President George H.W. Bush. “Texas has become a prime example of what happens when you mix fiscal responsibility, strong leadership and a vision of moving a state forward. It is an honor to endorse Gov. Rick Perry for the general election.”
George H.W. Bush was sworn in as president of the United States in January 1989 and served until January 1993. During his term in office, the Cold War ended; the threat of nuclear war was drastically reduced; the Soviet Union ceased to exist, replaced by a democratic Russia with the Baltic States becoming free; the Berlin Wall fell and Germany was reunified with Eastern Europe; and he put together an unprecedented international coalition to liberate Kuwait.
Former First Lady Barbara Bush is a tireless advocate of volunteerism, helping countless charities and humanitarian causes. Today she and President Bush serve as Co-Chairs of C-Change, an organization that represents more than 150 individuals and groups that fight cancer. She also enjoys reading to children at schools and hospitals across the nation.
“I am deeply honored to receive the endorsement of former President George H. W. Bush and former First Lady Barbara Bush,” said Gov. Perry. “His devotion and leadership, to our country, has brought forth inspiration to us all.”
Gov. Perry’s endorsements highlight the broad-based support he has from diverse groups and industries, ranging from agriculture, health care and retail sales, to construction, law enforcement and education.
In his remarks, Gov. Perry emphasized the creation of 850,000 Texas jobs in the last ten years and the recent drop in the unemployment rate in Texas; leaving the national rate nearly two points above ours. He also touted our state’s low taxes, predictable regulatory climate, fair legal system and education efforts as crucial elements that have helped make it a national leader in exports and Fortune 1000 companies.
Governor Perry swapped out his cowboy boots for a pair of combat boots to show his support for the When They Come Back...We Give Back boot campaign.
The Boot Girls created a concept to show support for our military men and women by capturing images of public figures and civilian Americans in combat boots. Each image is meant to remind people that despite our differences, everyone should support those fighting for our freedom.
“Bill White’s offensive belief that military men and women’s right to vote is somehow linked to the location of their children’s education is a terrible insult to the men and women of our armed forces who do not have children and to those whose children accompany them while they are stationed abroad. Bill White’s untenable anti-military position also ignores the rights of military men and women who remain connected to communities through their intention to return home following a deployment serving our nation. Bill White should immediately apologize for his attempt to deny military men and women their full voting rights.”
“I’m proud to join Gov. Pawlenty in support of our men and women in the armed forces and proud of what we have done together to promote the importance of finding state-based solutions to the challenges our nation faces,” said Gov. Perry. “Texas is leading the way to create the best place in America to live, work and raise a family because of the fiscally conservative approach we have held to over the years and because of the policies we have enacted on the state level to address the issues most important to Texans. I will continue working to keep principles of limited government and fiscal restraint as the guiding forces behind our state’s approach to governance.”
Gov. Pawlenty is serving his second term as the 39th governor of Minnesota. His public service career includes serving as a criminal prosecutor, Eagan City Councilmember, and ten-year member of the Minnesota House of Representatives, including four years as House Majority Leader. Pawlenty previously served as chair of the National Governors Association.
Christmas time has always been a favorite holiday for our family, but it took on an added significance this year as the Perry family received the gift of a new daughter-in-law who walked the aisle with our son just a few days ago. We could not be happier and we appreciate the flood of congratulations we have received from across Texas and beyond.
No matter what gifts top your list this year, we pray that you and your family are blessed with health, happiness and optimism for a new year. With friends like you, we are confident that 2010 will be an amazing year.
As you gather with friends and family this week, please remember to say a prayer of thanksgiving for our troops serving bravely overseas and their families here at home, asking God to protect their every step. Their gift to us is freedom and our gratitude should know no bounds.
We have added a special section to our flickr.com site where you can see photos of troops I met during my trips to Iraq and Afghanistan earlier this year.
Go to http://www.flickr.com/groups/freedom-fighters where you can not only look for and tag troops you know, you can also upload images of your loved ones serving our country overseas. (If you're not a flickr member already, it's easy to sign up for a free account.) This online album will be a nice holiday tribute to our troops.
No matter what holiday you celebrate this time of year, Anita and I pray blessings on you and your family.