Perry aide dismisses painkiller accusation as an ‘anonymous untruth’

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

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 Daily Caller obtained a full copy of the new eBook “Inside the Circus,” which comes out Tuesday. TheDC published excerpts, including the part about painkillers, on Monday.

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.

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