Rick Perry Buy American Veto

Texas Gov. Rick Perry Vetoes ‘Buy American’ Bill

Texas Governor Rick Perry vetoed House Bill 535, commonly referred to as the “Buy Texan, Buy American” bill, after it was approved by the Texas House unanimously.

The bill also passed the Texas Senate by a vote of 23 to 7, making Perry’s potential veto the only big stopping force for the bill not becoming law.

After he vetoed the Buy American bill, Rick Perry took to his website to release an explanation. He explained that the bill would require state agencies to give preferences to goods “manufactured” in Texas above all others when making purchasing decisions. He added:

“Current law already requires agencies to give preferences to goods produced and grown in Texas. While I support and encourage our agencies to buy goods from Texas businesses, this bill simply does not change current law.”

But some disagreed with Gov. Perry, like Texas ARL-CIO President Becky Moeller, who released a rebuttal to the press, alleging that Perry’s veto “has undercut the creation and preservation of manufacturing jobs in Texas and the U.S.” She added:

“These jobs are critical to our economic success. Despite the governor’s grandstanding in California and Illinois and his rhetoric about jobs, the veto of HB 535 reveals a painful truth: this Governor won’t stand up for American jobs or Texas workers.”

Despite Rick Perry’s explanation, the Buy American bill wasn’t exactly like current legislation. Rather, HB 535 would have added “manufactured” to the list of requirements for agencies giving preferences to Texan ans US goods. The bill defined it as “with respect to a manufactured good, an item produced as a result of a manufacturing process that alters the form of the components, including articles, materials, or supplies, that are directly incorporated into the item …” would gain preference as well.

The 83rd Legislature had a limited time to override the veto, but the time allowed has since passed. Do you think Governor Rick Perry should have signed the Buy American bill, or was he right to veto it?

[Image via Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com]