Inside the Beltway: Is Gingrich ready to pair with Perry?

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Is Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich ready to declare Texas Gov. Rick Perry his running mate? Fox News political analyst Carl Cameron is convinced the Gingrich campaign is on the cusp of pairing the two in time for the Republican National Convention in August, which is a little more than 24 weeks away. The Gingrich/Perry combo is not a bad rumor to have afloat as Mississippi and Alabama go to the primaries on Tuesday.

There is hubbub. Mr. Perry has said he has no interest in the vice presidency, his spokeswoman delicately calls a Gingrich/Perry ticket “humbling but premature.” Mr. Gingrich’s spokesman R.C. Hammond denies there are any meaningful conversations afoot. Yet Mr. Perry has not left the national stage. The Lone Star leader continues to campaign for the former House speaker. And Mr. Perry is still on message, and has a taste for some push-back against the White House.

“President Obama and his allies are once again putting their political agenda ahead of sound policy and the delivery of cost-efficient health care,” Mr. Perry wrote in a March 1 editorial, published at his official website. He also commented on the death of Andrew Breitbart, calling him “an outspoken pioneer for conservative media who fought for what he believed in, exposing government corruption and media bias.”

And after the Justice Department objected to a Texas voter-identification law requiring photo IDs, Mr. Perry said Monday, “The DOJ has no valid reason for rejecting this important law, which requires nothing more extensive than the type of photo identification necessary to receive a library card or board an airplane. Their denial is yet another example of the Obama administration’s continuing and pervasive federal overreach.”

BUMPER PATROL

“The trouble with political jokes is that they get elected.”

- (Bumper sticker spotted in Cary, N.C.)

STAND BY YOUR SOFA

And the easy chair and bedroom suite, too. Sen. Kay Hagan, North Carolina Democrat, and House Beautiful editor-in-chief Newell Turner join forces at the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday to call upon consumers “to take a stand for American jobs and the economy by buying American-made furniture.”

It’s not that loyal Americans don’t like their home-grown goodies. Mr. Turner reveals that 91 percent of the citizenry prefer furniture that is made in the U.S. But alas, 48 percent also reported that the furniture they purchased most recently was either not made in the U.S. or they just weren’t sure of the origins. Lawmaker and editor hope to remedy that situation.

“The importance of the relationship between American-made furniture and our economic recovery should not be underestimated, especially as we see more and more of our furniture being exported to other countries. American-made furniture is second to none,” Mrs. Hagan says.

ROVE’S PROWESS

It is perhaps one of the few times we’ll see the names of Karl Rove, Paul Begala and James Carville together in a harmonious way. The trio has been inducted into the American Association of Political Consultants Hall of Fame for making “an indelible mark on our nation’s — and the world’s — political landscape,” says Dale Emmons, president of the organization.

Messrs. Begala and Carville, both CNN analysts, are credited as the point men of former President Bill Clinton’s campaign and administration. Mr.Rovegets accolades as the central adviser to former President George W. Bush, when he was Texas governor and in the White House.

“I am excited to see this recognition for Karl’, says Art Hackney, who is vice president of the association.

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