Rick Perry Disses Obama, Then Agrees to Meeting

Didn't want any part of quick handshake on Austin tarmac

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 8, 2014 9:50 AM CDT

(Newser) – Rick Perry is not interested in a photo op with President Obama. The Texas governor and maybe-presidential-candidate yesterday said he would not be greeting Obama at the airport when he arrives in Austin tomorrow. "I appreciate the offer," Perry wrote in a letter to the president, according to the Austin Statesman, "but a quick handshake on the tarmac will not allow for a thoughtful discussion" on the immigration crisis. Perry said he'd welcome a more substantive sit-down meeting.

The White House responded today by offering just such a powwow, Reuters reports. "The president would welcome a meeting with you while he is in Texas," Valerie Jarrett wrote in a reply letter. She invited Perry to a meeting with faith leaders and local elected officials. Texas officials later confirmed that Perry would accept the invitation, USA Today reports. On Sunday, Perry bashed the administration's response to the border crisis, saying, "They either are inept or don't care."

Texas Gov. Rick Perry talks to members of the US House Committee on Homeland Security, July 3, 2014 in McAllen, Texas.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry talks to members of the US House Committee on Homeland Security, July 3, 2014 in McAllen, Texas.   (AP Photo/The Monitor, Gabe Hernandez)
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