Since the event though, I have read about it and have seen some of the comedians' takes on the performance of the various contestants. The pundits and the Republicans in attendance at the Reagan Library were all slavering over the appearance of Rick Perry in his first debate. He did not disappoint them, which is to say that he said a lot of crazy things that don't stand up to scrutiny but are the kinds of things that tea partiers love to hear.
I was bemused and appalled by the observation that the strongest applause line of the night was when one of the questioners - I forget which one - started to ask Perry about all of the executions he has overseen as governor. More than 200 men have died under his watch. When that number was read out in the introduction to the question, the Republican crowd broke into wild applause! It's likely that at least some of those men who were executed were innocent of the crimes of which Texas juries had found them guilty, and it is almost certain that one of them was completely innocent, but little details like that do not bother Republican audiences. Any more than they bother Rick Perry.
Of all the ridiculous statements made by Perry during the debate, though, surely the most ridiculous was equating global climate change deniers with Gallileo. Somewhere, Gallileo must be shaking his head over that one. As was pointed out to me, Perry was exactly 180 degrees away from the correct analogy. In fact, the climate change deniers are in the tradition of Gallileo's persecutors, the pope and the Catholic Church of his time.
I thought that Stephen Colbert had by far the best commentary on Perry's performance.
The late night comedians must be thanking their gods for sending them Rick Perry. The jokes almost write themselves.