Rick Perry’s appearance on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” is one of the better recent examples of why candidates take to late-night: After laughing at himself, including his latest gaffe of misidentifying the voting age, Perry outlined his campaign agenda with little challenge from the late-night house, and audience applause to boot.
Other than the fact that he was the second billed guest after Melissa McCarthy, there was no talk about his falling fortunes in the polls, Newt Gingrich’s come-from-behind rise or Perry’s barely veiled dislike of Mitt Romney. Instead, the Texas governor seemed as at ease on the Leno couch as any actor promoting another movie.
“I thought it was the drinking age,” Perry said to Leno after the host ran a clip of his voting age gaffe. “You have got to have and excuse, and I am sticking to it.”
Perry also defended Donald Trump but seemed to dismiss Herman Cain, saying he still needed to address the sexual harassment allegations and those that he had an affair. Talking about their rival economic plans, Perry said, “I think 999 may be done.”