Perry, White ads put to the truth test

October 1, 2010 4:30:12 PM PDT
With just a month and a day away from the election, Rick Perry and Bill White are pulling out all the stops, flooding television and radio with attack ads and campaign promises. But do their claims pass the truth test? Don't know why or how it happened, but both White and Perry are currently running ads about their plan to secure the border. We start with Governor Perry's

"I recently confronted Barack Obama with detailed steps to reduce drug cartel violence along the border," Perry claimed in his ad.

Perry greeted President Obama in Austin August 9. He gave the president a letter asking for more border protection. And White House reporters noted Perry was the first governor to ever clap as President Obama emerged from Air Force One, so it's not true to call this a confrontation.

Let's move on.

"Texas has spent $230 million for border law enforcement, technology and aircraft," the ad claims.

That's true. Texas did spend the money, but we add a question mark there because the $230 million has been used on programs that are tough to track, including millions on a camera network that's shown few results.

Let's move to Bill White's ad.

"Rick Perry's been governor for nine and a half years. You would think that he would've been able to get some of the federal resources he now claims we needed all those years," White says in the ad..

Bill White attacks Rick Perry for not getting enough federal money, but exactly what money does White think Perry should have gotten. We'll put a question mark there. But he says he should have been able to use the eight years when President Bush was in office to get more of it.

"As governor, I will put 1,000 more police officers and deputy sheriffs along the border, arresting drug dealers and gang members and let them know they're not safe in Texas," White claims in the ad.

True. That's his plan. But even his campaign can't say where the money will come from. Remember Bill White says the state is facing an $18 billion budget gap. All his campaign will say on this promise is that it's a priority.

The campaigns are spending at least $300,000 a week on ads just in Houston. We'll keep checking.


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