Obama team to Texas Democrats: It's time to start attacking Rick Perry

Forget today’s Gallup poll. If you want a solid sign that Perry’s achieved at least parity with Romney, here it is.

“Your feedback will help hold him accountable on the campaign trail, inspire fellow Texans to get involved, and introduce his record — his actual record — to voters across the country,” Hector Nieto, the campaign’s Texas director, told Texas supporters by email blast today. “Your words will remind him that even as he runs, he won’t be able to hide — a lesson he apparently hadn’t learned as recently as last week. That’s when his campaign explained that the positions he took in the book he wrote just nine months ago, like saying that Social Security is unconstitutional and `a crumbling monument to the failure of the New Deal,’ no longer represent his views.

“But what other Americans are just starting to learn about — and, frankly, reject — Texans have dealt with for more than a decade. It’s up to us to make sure he doesn’t get to run away from the truth.”

Nieto’s email says hundreds of Texans have already shared their dim views on Perry, directing critics to an online form where they can suggest their own favorite “failed policies” for which he should be held accountable.

Yes, they really do have an online form just for this on Obama’s campaign site. I’m intrigued by the fact that they’re not content to rely on standard oppo research in this case but want man-on-the-street grumbling from Texas liberals instead. Is that because they’re deeply (and understandably) worried about voters being dazzled by Texas’s record on jobs and think that only “eyewitness testimony” from the locals disputing it will be effective? Or is it because Perry has a huge, obvious populist advantage over President Spock such that only fellow salt-of-the-earth southerners might be able to counter it? The “Rick Perry is the liberal antichrist” message will only go so far; to reach undecided voters, they need to start casting doubt on his heartland authenticity too. Rank-and-file Texas Democrats can help.

Speaking of cultural contrasts, here’s a photo that was tweeted today by David Limbaugh. It’s clever, but (a) there’s already an obvious liberal counterattack and (b) it’s easier to get traction with the “noble serviceman versus slacker dandy” comparison if the slacker dandy in question didn’t give the order to shoot Osama Bin Laden in the face.