- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Making a pitch for his own executive experience ahead of 2016, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry is asking whether people would prefer an experienced captain — or an exciting lecturer — to fly them across the Atlantic Ocean in bad weather.

“I tell people — like gettin’ on an airplane, and you’re flyin’ from New York City to London and there’s some pretty severe weather,” Mr. Perry told Bloomberg Politics. “Do you want a grizzled, 20,000-hour-old captain in the left seat of that airplane that’s done this thousands of times, and also been out there and done this, or do you want a really bright, capable, exciting lecturer that will have you on the edge of your seat in a classroom talkin’ about aerodynamics and how an airplane flies and how all this works?”

Mr. Perry, a potential GOP presidential contender, said the next election cycle is going to take place “after this period of time of a young, inexperienced United States senator in the form of Barack Obama.”

Another first-term senator — Ted Cruz of Texas — formally entered the 2016 GOP presidential race this week. Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marco Rubio of Florida, both elected in 2010, are also weighing White House bids.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, speaking on “Fox and Friends” Wednesday, said he’d like to see the party’s nominee be a “conservative reform governor” and that he’d make a decision on a presidential run after the state’s legislative session, which is scheduled to wrap up in June.

“We need a president who wants to do something, not just be somebody,” Mr. Jindal said. “And so, we put a lot of thought into what the next president should do. I’m surprised others aren’t doing that.”

Mr. Cruz, for his part, has pushed back on the experience question, saying on Fox News’ “The Kelly File” that Mr. Obama was “basically a back-bencher” during his time in the Senate.

“In my time in the Senate, there are a lot of faults I have, but nobody would accuse me of being a back-bencher,” Mr. Cruz said. “What I’ve tried to do is lead on the great challenges of the day, whether it’s stopping Obamacare or stopping the out-of-control debt or stopping executive amnesty or defending our constitutional rights or standing with Israel or stopping Iran from getting nuclear weapons.”

He also said that unlike Mr. Obama, he wasn’t a “community organizer” before his time in the U.S. Senate, citing his tenure as solicitor general of Texas.

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