A campaign adviser to Texas Gov. Rick Perry is denying a report in a soon-to-be released book by Politico that the former presidential candidate’s debate performances were hindered by his use of painkillers to treat back pain.
“POLITICO’s e-book is a low in irresponsible, unsourced and unfounded ‘reporting,’ with anonymous untruths about Gov. Perry’s debate performances,” said Ray Sullivan, Perry’s former campaign communications director.
The report called it an “open secret” that Perry — who had back surgery last summer — “was using painkillers in sufficient dosages to keep him standing through the two-hour debates.”
“Perry officials have also repeatedly and truthfully denied that pain medicine was a factor in the campaign,” Sullivan told TheDC. “POLITICO’s claims are false, unsubstantiated and ultimately harmful to the political and electoral process, and the to trust in the media that covers the process.”
Added Sullivan: “Gov. Perry’s recovery from summer surgery was successful, leaving him more than able handle the grueling schedule that accompanies modern presidential campaigns.” (SEE ALSO: Are painkillers to blame for Perry’s debate woes?)
The authors also imply in the eBook that the painkillers may have led to a humorous incident before an October debate in New Hampshire when the “manager of a rival campaign” overheard Perry belting out the song “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad” while in the bathroom.