Shoulda asked Nancy Reagan to pick out new chinaWhat up, Tejas? Oh, your health care system is the worst in the country, you rank 51st in the attainment of high school diplomas, and Rick Perry has just chopped $8 billion from education and Medicaid? (You know, in addition to turning down that free Medicaid from the feds, because federal money has syphilis?) Well, that’s just because Texas has priorities. Priorities like “screw things what are good for citizens; Rick Perry’s mansion’s too old!” Well not anymore it ain’t, now there is a spanking new $25 million renovation to the Governor’s Mansion with all the “old-growth” and “longleaf pine” Rick Perry’s simple heart could desire!

For their $21.5 million, plus $3.5 million in public donations, taxpayers got inch-thick longleaf pine floors, an added wing and a geothermal heating-and-cooling system that required digging 40 350-foot (107-meter) wells. The cost of restoring the 25-room house would be enough to pay for almost 11 million student lunches at Austin’s high schools. […]

The cost also covered tracking down and buying old-growth Bastrop pine to restore the six 29-foot columns adorning the front of the Greek Revival-style house, said Dealey Herndon, the project manager. Workers stripped layers of lead paint from the white brick exterior and replaced the burned roof.

“I had to question every day whether this was a good use of the money,” Herndon said. “The cost of this is very high. Everything that wasn’t original architecture had to go out — the kitchen equipment, the cabinets, the bathroom tile.”

Hey man, you don’t want Rick Perry to have to live on the cheap, do you? Just think what that would do to Texas’s reputation.

[Bloomberg, via HuffPo]

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  • In fairness, he's probably just raping the education budget for the money, not the oil subsidies…

  • Barb

    It is pretty sad when Rick Perry makes George W. Bush look like the smart Governor of Texas.

    • tihond

      To be fair, 5 million was to get the smell of Bush out of the mansion.

      • Barb

        Good one, Tihond!
        No one likes a smelly bush.

      • PubOption

        According to Hugo Chavez, Bush smelled of Sulfur.

    • NYNYNYjr

      I dont think thats happened yet.

  • CrunchyKnee

    I can haz new cardboard box to live in?

    • Vecchiojohn

      Quit bitching, you lazy lie-about. Texas has plenty of bridge underpasses with nice landscaping so we don't have to see the people who live there.

      • GunToting[Redacted]

        Yeah, but don't you have to share them with the bats?

    • RadioSlut

      And do you want cake with that too? Get a job, whiner!

  • spends2much

    I think the average Poor with a sick, illiterate kid would totally get behind this.

  • “longleaf pine”

    I call bullshit. Pines have needles, not leaves. This is clearly made up shit for "a stash of 'square grouper' found off South Padre Island"

    • Estproph
      • Say, you must be one them "scientitians" they keep warning us about…

    • prommie

      Back when square grouper used to wash up with some regularity down in Vero Beach, we used to call the scavenged product, which was frequently to be found for sale after a second drying process, "sea weed."

    • thatsitfortheother1

      Only in Texas would they refer to them as leaves.

  • chascates

    This is the second time in almost 30 years that the mansion has had a major renovation. Before a friend of mine entered the Texas Department of Public Safety he was a Capitol Police guard at the mansion while it was unoccupied during the first renovation. He gave me a tour of the place and I had the pleasure of urinating all the floor of what was the governor's bedroom.

    • Texan_Bulldog

      Last time it got renovated, someone tried to burn it to the ground (then we paid hundreds of thousands for Rick to live in some fancy digs on the lake instead of a trailer like Mike Huckabee). Hmmm…where were you on that night in question, chascates?

      • chascates

        No, no! This was back around 1982 or so. Shortly before the Capitol caught on fire. And I was working at night at UT then; I have witnesses.

  • MacRaith

    11 million school lunches? Bah humbug. Let them eat long-leaf pine.

    • kittensdontlie

      Why are those children in school anyway?! They should have hammers in hand getting that project done pronto!

  • Goonemeritus

    If you are going to spend your life in the closet it might as well be a fabulous closet.

  • Barb

    Rick Perry's father-in-law did his vasectomy for him on the cheap. Couldn't he do the work on the mansion too?

    • I don't think they're touching the plumbing.

  • Terry

    Wait, wait, wait. They just renovated the frickin' place in 2009. There was a fire in 2008 and it was redone the next year.

    What the heck has Perry done to the place that it needs to be renovated AGAIN three years later?

    • FakaktaSouth

      That was my first thought too – wasn't he running around shooting coyotes behind the rental house he was staying in the LAST TIME they were doing this to the mansion? He must throw hella good parties that require the fucking floors be replaced every two years. Him and all them dogs, just pissing all over the place marking territory and shooting things.

      • OurDailyBread

        Too bad more of America's dogs can't shoot things.

      • Terry

        …and what's Perry doing putting in a hippie geothermal heating system? Shouldn't the Tx Governor's Mansion be heated with genuine West Texas crude? Think about the jobs!1!!!

        • Texan_Bulldog

          Or with the blood of Messicans?

        • PubOption

          That 's as bad as the commie solar panels that Carter installed on the White House, and St. Ronnie removed.

    • Well, let's just say that old saying "All hat, no cattle" was sort of reversed. Kinda.

    • fartknocker

      Since the fire, Rick and Anita have been living in a gorgeous 5,000 square foot rental in Westlake Hills, along with his security contingent. The State has been paying the property owner a rental rate of $9,900/month – for five years. The property owner is known contributor to Rick's campaign.

      They have been living in this rental because the Perrys have been screwing with this project. Anita asked for an expansion because she's always thought the mansion was too small. When changes to historical structures like this occur, the State Preservation Board has to go back to the Legislature for more appropriations. Given that the Texas legislature meets on a bi-annual basis, this move has worked out really well for Rick and his rental house owner.

      And this is why Rick Perry is a goat fucker.

      • thatsitfortheother1

        The other reason is that thing he does to the goats.

      • PubOption

        And the money goes round and round and it comes out somewhere convenient for Rick.

    • Millennial Malaise

      Something something my best friends own construction companies

  • spends2much

    Renovating mansions…it's in the Constitution, son!!

  • qwerty42

    Geeze, you couldn't make this stuff up. (OTOH, pine heartwood does look beautiful)

  • Not_So_Much

    A lot of it is probably just kickbacks to cover that huge oxycodone bill.

  • Estproph

    The cost of restoring the 25-room house would be enough to pay for almost 11 million student lunches at Austin’s high schools.

    To be fair, Texas doesn't have many tuberculosis hospitals.

    • And then there's the obesity problem.

      No, better to spend it on a "longleaf pine" desk than food for poor kids.

    • Not anymore.

    • Dashboard Buddha

      On the other than, you can't throw a rock in the Dallas/Fort Worth area without hitting a dialysis center. I noticed this when I visited TX back in October. They have more centers than my town has Bank of America offices.

  • OneYieldRegular

    And just look at the result: if you turned down the lighting, photographed that hall in B&W and put Jonathan Frid on the stairs, you'd have the crappy set of the original "Dark Shadows."

    • You'd have to add some random boom mike shadows, wobbling walls, a drunken, animatronic Joan Bennett gazing out windows while waiting to haltingly grumble her next line, and a completely stoned Grayson Hall staring at the ceiling like a cat watching a moth, while she tries to recall if she's Julia or Magda in this scene, and where it all went wrong after Night of the Iguana.
      But you could probably get all that and David Selby for twenty five million.

  • Baconzgood

    Some animals are more equal than others

    -fucking pig-

  • FakaktaSouth

    Bastrop pine is very beautiful, very strong, very important. Perhaps those 11million hungry kids could all take turns gnawing on that – it would also take care of the need for any pesky dental work them rug-rats seem to have. Stupid kids, always with the needing to eat and have teeth. We'll learn em.

    • prommie

      Old growth pine! Yummmmm, woodworkers love wide boards! The only thing they seem to do with the good stuff these days is build stairs with it. When I needed some good quality pine for the sea bright skiff I built I had to use stair boards.

      • FakaktaSouth

        Weeelll, apparently Long leaf pine is Alabama's state tree – I did just learn that here on the wonks – I don't know what a sea bright skiff is, but I bet using the stair boards to build it made getting up to the second floor a pain in the ass. Sliding down a railing is one thing, scooting back up it is a drag.

        • prommie

          This here is a sea bright skiff:
          When I was just a young prommie, these boats were used by the lifeguards on the ocean beaches. When they weren't using them they would turn them upside down on the beach and I would crawl underneath the upside down boat and have my own little fort. When I grew up, I built one, I hunted down the 80 year old man who used to build them decades before, he sold me his patterns and plans and told me what to do.

          • FakaktaSouth

            I am afraid of clicking on craigslist, I am afraid it will automatically make me an online prostitute. (I do need to get a job, but I don't wanna also get murdered, dead whore pay seems shitty) But I will risk it for the knowledge.

            Please tell me you still flip the one you built over on the beach to play in like a fort also. That would make my day.

          • prommie

            I play "fort" in the other one. Actually, more "pirate ship." Even more fun!

          • FakaktaSouth

            That is a very cute row-boat looking thing. I don't have an ocean real near-by. Can people play in those things in a lake? We got a reeeeal big one of those, attached to a river that GOES to the gulf, but no ocean.

            I have learned recently that I prefer Pirate ships with heli-pads.

          • prommie

            I can build a pirogue, thats a lot easier.

          • FakaktaSouth

            Stop making me google things! That's some kind of food, yes? (I'M KIDDING sort of)

            OH FOR GOD'S SAKE YOU COULD HAVE JUST SAID CANOE. Fancy always with the fancy.

          • prommie

            I guess I am a fancy-lad. And a pirogue is what you would go out in the bayou frog-gigging in, you would never use a canoe for something so horrendously cajun in nature.

          • FakaktaSouth

            Okay then I want one of those then, a boat that sounds like a sandwich or pigs in a blanket or something. I am nothing if not happily horrendously cajun at every opportunity.

          • prommie

            Now I want a muffaletta.

          • FakaktaSouth

            NOW you're talking my language. I know what that is – and where to get one right now and yep, that's goooooood…

  • Dashboard Buddha

    When they have the open house banquet, Carrier Pigeon and Roast Yeti will be featured on the menu.

  • SorosBot

    "The cost of restoring the 25-room house would be enough to pay for almost 11 million student lunches at Austin’s high schools"

    Wait, they're spending $2.27 on student lunches? Why is Texas spoiling those lucky ducky kids? They should just shove a bowl of Ramen at them.

    • Ramen's more expensive. Remember, this is *Texas* we're talking about. Slop's too good for the little shits.

    • Jus_Wonderin

      Ramen will turn them all terroristy.

  • Well, at least no one can say that Gov. Goodhair is unclear about announcing his priorities.

  • Barb

    How much did it cost for Rick's "Niggerhead" rock to be relocated to the mansion?

    • Couple good ol' boys with a truck, so a six pack.

      Of course, it will appear on a bill for a million.

    • Some speculate that it was stolen by Skull & Bones, and now resides in their Yale crypt, next to Geronimo's skull. (Reading my comment, I can confirm that this is a rumor on the Internet!)

  • You liebruls and your crying about starving kids and the waste of making 1%er enabler Rick "Doofus" Perry and his family happy. They have to live in that taxpayer boondoggle! You don't.

    Nobody is as important as the Gubbiner of Tejas even if all he does is get high on goofballs and can't count to 3.

  • Texan_Bulldog

    …"enough to pay for almost 11 million student lunches at Austin’s high schools." Hey, Rick is just trying to curb our obesity problem and teach kids early on the concept of 'no free lunches'.

    But, yeah, I wonder if this guy is going to be governor for the rest of my life–holy cow!

    • HistoriCat

      Too stupid for higher office and too greedy to just leave – we're stuck with him unless a rent boy scandal erupts.

    • Spawn Paul

      I think he'll be just be the governor until we secede. After that he'll be king 4 life.

  • randcoolcatdaddy

    Cutting services to the poor and school lunches is the Texas way of encouraging the poorz to move to Louisiana for their public learnin'.

    • thatsitfortheother1

      At least they'll come out of Louisiana multi-lingual.

  • sbj1964

    Nice to see that Rick is willing to sacrafice in these hard times like the rest of the GOP.Can't wait to see him on MTV Cribs.

  • Those chandeliers look pretty old. I think it would look nicer with new chandeliers.

  • Come on now, Wonketteers!

    A fancy lad like Governor Goodhair needs a whorehouse to go with his image.

    • prommie

      A Fancy Lad? Oh my.

  • spareme

    Longleaf Pine is Alabama's State Tree and also endangered. His use of them for floors is disgusting.

  • RadioSlut

    Remember the Alamo?

  • What a dump!

    /bad Bette Davis imitation.

  • elburritodeluxe

    A leftist "geothermal heating -and- cooling system"?

    Beloved Saint Ronald Wilson Reagan is spinning in his grave over that politically-correct, liberal bullshit! The only way a true conservative heats HIS home is with American coal!

    • The Sacramento Governor's Mansion looks the same way and Nancy refused to live in something so "old and run-down". They lived in a tacky, fake English Tudor pre-fab number while he was Governor.

  • Who are they kidding. You can find all that crap on eBay for 1/10th the price.

  • thatsitfortheother1

    Place looks like a high class bordello.

    Or so I've heard.

  • elviouslyqueer

    That staircase isn't nearly wide enough to accommodate Rick's hoop skirts. Hell, it's barely wide enough to handle his portieres.

    • FakaktaSouth

      That may be my most favorite 9 minutes of tv ever – and has been a part of all my thoughts on ball gowns for my whole life. It may be a cool dress, but if there isn't a curtain rod in it, well, it's not REALLY fancy enough, is it?

    • Jus_Wonderin

      LOL. I agree with FS. I howled when I first saw that. I will never forget it.

  • fawkedifiknow

    If you think a state that would elect Governors like the last two even gives a shit about things like this, you got another think coming.

  • Guppy

    Everything that wasn’t original architecture had to go out

    If that includes the air conditioning, requiring Government Hair Helmet to live in the place in August while denying climate change, it will be worth every penny.

  • Rick Perry, you are no Jackie Kennedy.

    • thatsitfortheother1

      Depends on who you ask.

  • Biff


  • mavenmaven

    "There are three important renovations we need to do in the mansion: the kitchen, the bedroom, and… I'm sorry, I can't recall the third…"

    • kittensdontlie

      11 million children will go hungry…Ooops.

  • OneDollarJuana

    I just read an article about how little Tejas towns are all worried about criminals because tax receipts are so low that they've had to choose between keeping city water flowing or employing cops, so the police departments are history. I almost had a sad, but then I remembered that it's those same goddam little towns that keep voting in stupid-ass sociopathic right-wing politicians, so I guess you reap what you sow. Sucks to be you, Texas!

    • Tommy1733

      An excellent point – I have a similar condition here in Indiana.

    • GunToting[Redacted]

      Sorta like the city workers in Scranton getting paid minimum wage because the teahadists cut everything and refuse to raise taxes. Or the fires in Colorado. Or any of several thousand examples. Lotta noseless faces out there.

  • anniegetyerfun

    Have Texans stopped paying attention to anything Perry does? I feel like if anyone realized that he was still around, AND in charge of the state, someone would have shot him by now.

  • RadioSlut

    I wonder how much that new McNaughton painting cost.

  • poorgradstudent

    And I thought we'd have to wait until Texas seceded before it became a banana republic…

  • prommie

    Hey now I am seeing this interesting advertisement up here on the new Wonkette for a service that will find me a "Mutually Benefical Arrangement." It says I can choose between a college girl or a single mom! Damn, I must look into this. An arrangement that is actually "mutually beneficial" sure would be an improvement over the status quo!

    • RadioSlut

      Free Love isn't Free!

  • One_who_wanders

    Wow. Someone's ad targeting sucks. A sugar daddy ad on Wonkette?

    • I know! I OT'd about that in the Jesse Jr. thread, but the caravan had moved on. Who can afford to stash some would-be Kardashian in a love shack and pay for her kids' iPhones? And Wonkette ladies have much higher self-esteem than that shit. Bent over naked women in banners can cause certain difficulties when surfing at work, also.

    • MacRaith

      Definitely. A sugar daddy ad belongs in a post about Herman Cain, not Rick Perry.

      • prommie

        Well now, the boys do need money for rent, same as those college girls and single moms.

  • Spawn Paul

    But what you guys aren't taking into consideration is the fact that after Texas secedes that 'ol dump is going to have to serve as King Perry's castle. Thrones, drawbridges, moats and dungeons ain't cheap y'all.

  • These rape rooms aren't going to build themselves you know!

  • DonnyKerabotsos

    According to the Wiki–

    "During May 2009, $22 million was allocated to the restoration of the Governor's Mansion, $11 million of which came from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009…"

    That's right. Socialist Texas is evidently using socialist stimulus money to spruce up Rick Perry's digs.

    Well he's got brass fucking balls, I'll give him that.

  • ElPinche

    Considering Texas has the worse healthcare coverage in the US, you'd think he'd cut some corners. Maybe get double-wide by Lake Travis ? Oh gov gov, I hate you so.

  • johnnymeatworth

    Shit, at least Nero could fucking do something while Rome burned. The best Perry can manage is redecorating.

  • Let them eat cake.

  • Generation[redacted]

    The nails ladies don't get how this works.

  • Billmatic

    Don't worry about that Bastrop pine, I really don't think they're gonna find any that isn't blackened, or growing for that matter.

  • Nostrildamus

    Workers stripped layers of lead paint …

    That explains both Perry and W.

  • thefrontpage

    This wasteful piece-of-crap "governor's mansion" should be torn down, demolished completely, and affordable public housing should be built on the spot-with rents no higher than $600 a month. Really. And there should be no "governor's mansions" for governors–or anyone else–in any state–again, really! Governor's can live in their own damn houses, for gawd's sake. Tear these stupid "mansions" down–and build public housing on their spots. That would be great to see!

  • comrad_darkness

    When you are spending a bundle to make something "Authentically Texas" you really need to step back and think some more.

  • rickmaci

    The only important renovation that place needed was fixing the front window after somebody threw Brokeback Perry through it.

  • kittensdontlie

    He's gotta have some place for when his guy friends come over and they do guy things, so the missus cant hear all that banging around and stuff. It's only common courtesy. Don't get the wrong idea, this guy is as straight as an arrow….hee hee…

  • ttommyunger

    A turd is still a turd, even if you keep it in a solid gold jewelry box.

  • larrykat

    An on the street corners the old ladies were knitting, knitting…

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