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Spin Check: Perry's "Smartest Guy in the Room" Ad
BY Omar Villafranca

What is Spin Check? As part of our coverage of Decision 2010 and the elections that affect Texas, we put political ads to the test.

Gov. Rick Perry's latest ad calls Bill White the "Smartest Guy in the Room," but it's not meant as a compliment.

Let's spin check it.

Here's the text of the ad:

Bill White.
The smartest guy in the room.
Even he thinks so.
Bill White's so smart, he advised Nobel Prize winners Al Gore and Barack Obama on energy policy.
(I've been on a lot of panels on climate change and it's various issues./For a period of 15 years.)
Bill White's so smart, he wants to bring California's energy standards to Texas.
He's so smart, he thinks Washington's Cap and Trade doesn't go far enough.
Bill White. Wrong for Texas.

The part of the ad that says "Bill White's so smart, he advised Nobel Prize winners Al Gore and Barack Obama on energy policy is TRUE.

White was deputy in the Department of Energy from 1993 to 1995 during the Clinton/Gore administration. He also wrote an e-mail to Rahm Emanuel, President's Barack Obama's former White House chief of staff, advising the incoming president on energy policy.

The ad's statement that, "Bill White's so smart, he wants to bring California's energy standards to Texas," is FALSE, on a technicality.

The Perry campaign pointed to an article in which White supported one California energy standard for Texas. The standard would have made Texas rules for car emissions as strict as California's rules.

The ad's statement that, "He's so smart, he thinks Washington's cap and trade doesn't go far enough," is FALSE.

Perry's campaign pointed to an interview with the Texas Tribune in which White was asked, "Do you support cap and trade?" White answered and included the line, "Unless you have vehicle fuel economy standards, you really won’t see reduced emissions." Perry's camp only used part of White's response. White has also told media outlets he does not support cap-and-trade legislation.

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