The Texas governor formally announced his campaign from the Francis Marion Hotel in downtown Charleston at 1:30 p.m. Beginning at noon, though, three locals in antebellum garb worked the crowd across the street.
“As governor, he’s already threatened to secede Texas from the union,” was a common address they offered to the hundreds attending the weekly Farmer’s Market in Marion Square.
“And if he’s elected president, Perry can secede the whole dang country!”
Working as Bonnie, Clyde and Rutledge Beauregard, the trio engaged with the crowd for about an hour, presenting themselves as confederates reborn after learning of Perry’s bid for the White House.
“We’ve waited 150 years for Rick Perry. We haven’t had a candidate this good since Jefferson Davis!
“And what better place to announce his campaign than right here in South Carolina? We were the first state to secede back in 1861, after all.”
The Recovery Act brought $787 billion into the national economy with goal of rebuilding from recession.
“We’ve got a great union,” Perry said while criticizing the program. “But Texas is a very unique place,” he said in reiteration of the secession idea, “and we’re a pretty independent lot to boot.”
The confederate three stuck that line to Perry today, bearing “secede now!” signs.
“For some reason, the three who were born in the 1800’s haven’t aged since the end of the Civil War,” said Lachlan McIntosh, director of SC Forward Progress, about the demonstrators. “They are excited about Perry’s talk of seceding from the union and his repeated call for states’ rights.”
McIntosh handled press that approached the group, which included both local and national media. ABC News quickly ran the story on its website.
In today’s formal announcement, Perry was quick in attempt to overcome his 2009 secession statements.
“I know I’ve talked a lot about Texas,” he said. “I’m a Texan, and I’m proud of it. But first and foremost, I am an incredibly proud American.”
After the demonstration, Bonnie, Clyde and Rutledge quickly returned to their confederate roots in the city where the Civil War began.
Their message is still alive, though, and was even featured in media from Perry's home state.