Rick Perry flubs Occupy Toronto quote, speech
Straying from his normally composed and collected delivery, U.S. Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry larded a 23-minute speech to New Hampshire conservatives with facial contortions, wisecracks and words like "dude" and "awesome" on Friday.
It was just the latest in a string of goof-ups, including a campaign appearance the same day where he tried to slag the burgeoning Occupy movement by quoting a Toronto activist mentioned in a Globe and Mail story.
Unbeknownst to Perry, however, the article was a satire and the activist, a fiction.
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Video of both incidents has gone viral. Perry's bizarre speech has rightist American publications speculating whether the Texas governor was intoxicated, and whether the incident will derail his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination like Howard Dean's 2004 run for the Democratic nod was scuttled by his emphatic exclamation at a rally in Iowa.
Once considered a top contender for his party's candidacy, Perry has seen his poll numbers dwindle in the last two months following a series of widely criticized debate performances.
In Iowa, the first state to hold a primary or caucus in the presidential electoral cycle, the latest poll has him in fifth place, well behind Georgia businessman Herman Cain and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.