Bachmann mailers hit Perry twice

Michele Bachmann did what she had to do at Monday night’s Republican presidential debate — she hit Rick Perry’s record, and hard.

She followed it up with two quick emailed statements, both going after Perry’s executive order mandating HPV vaccines for Texas schoolgirls.

The first mailer went to the press in the middle of the debate, right after Bachmann accused Perry of a quid pro quo — Perry’s former chief of staff worked as a lobbyist for Merck, the company that manufactured the vaccine, and the company donated $5,000 to Perry’s campaign in the years leading up to his mandate.

The note was titled “Rick Perry’s Crony Capitalism: The 2007 Vaccination Executive Order Fiasco.” It quoted a 2007 Austin American-Statesman editorial: “Merck stands to make millions of dollars as Gardasil becomes a mandatory vaccination in Texas and billions if other states follow Texas’ lead. A three-dose regimen costs $360 and Perry set aside $29 million so uninsured girls and women will have access to the vaccine.”

Hours later, she sent out a fundraising blast titled, “I’m Offended,” to her supporters, writing:

“If you watched tonight’s Republican debate, you saw Rick Perry defend his decision to mandate a vaccine for young girls through an executive order while he was governor of Texas. As a mother, I have raised three biological daughters and 23 foster daughters, and I believe taking away a parents right to direct the health care of their children is flat out wrong . It’s a violation of liberty and everything you and I stand for …

Governor Perry says if given the option again he would not issue the mandate. However, as President of the United States there are no mulligans; there are no do-overs.

Look for the hits on Perry to continue as Bachmann tries to win back the supporters who have flocked from her camp to his.

Devin Henry can be reached at

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