Knowing he is going to face a tough primary challenge next year from Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, Gov. Rick Perry has lately been trying to raise his profile with the conservative base of his party. So it was no surprise that he went out of his way to embrace the recent "Tea Party" protests.
But he may have gotten more attention than he anticipated when he decided to dip his toe into the part of the pool occupied by the most fringe elements of his party - the anti-government secessionists. Just by broaching the topic of secession, Perry put himself outside the mainstream of American politics and gave political legitimacy to the lunatic fringe wing of his party. If this actually helps him in a Republican Primary, it is a sad testament to the pathetic state of the GOP today.
But as the sitting governor it is completely innappropriate and irresponsible for Perry to be raising this issue at all. He is smart enough to know that it is completely asinine and stupid, but apparently still thinks exploiting this intellectually handicapped segment of the population will prove beneficial at election time. I hope he is wrong.