Rick Perry Says He’s Focused on Fires, Not Politics

Sep 5, 2011 7:50pm

Texas Governor Rick Perry decided to forego politics today when he flew from South Carolina to Texas to focus on the raging wildfires scorching thousands of acres across the Lone Star state.

“I’ll be real honest with you. I’m not paying any attention to politics right now. There’s plenty of time to take care of that.  People’s lives and their possessions are in danger. That’s substantially more important,” Perry said to a round of applause at a press conference in Bastrop, Texas this afternoon.

Perry cancelled his afternoon events in South Carolina today and California tomorrow to deal with what he described as “mean looking” fires which spread across Texas in the past week.  The wildfires have affected approximately 32,000 acres of land and destroyed 476 homes.

The Texas governor urged residents to be cautious and listen to evacuation orders in their area.

“You just don’t understand how quickly this can get out hand, and put people’s lives and their property in jeopardy,” Perry warned.

Perry expects FEMA will arrive in Texas on Wednesday, but in the meantime, he pressed residents to lend a hand to neighbors who are suffering from the fires.

“Find out what you can do to help your neighbor,” Perry said. “There’s a lot that Texans will do to take care of Texans over the course of the next 72 hours and I really appreciate you for doing that. We will pick up the pieces.  We always do.  Whether it’s a hurricane of monstrous size, or whether it’s floods, or whether it’s wildfires.  We will pick up the pieces.  We will rebuild.”

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