09/15/2011 06:53 am ET Updated Nov 14, 2011

Perry's Merck Lie

It turns out the Texas governor was simply lying in this week's GOP debate when he claimed only "$5,000" in contributions from the drug company that made the vaccine he personally ordered to be injected in all teenage girls.

Merck & Co gave Perry $23,500 in direct contributions and much more laundered to his campaign coffers through its $500,000 donated to the Republican Governor's Association that he chaired, Bloomberg reports. (Ponzi scheme?)

While the Perry camp tries to change the subject by taking advantage of Michelle Bachmann's idiotic and unproven claim that the vaccine to prevent cervical cancer causes mental retardation, the real issue remains: Did he circumvent his state legislature and mandate a vaccine because its maker politically supports him and hired his former chief of staff as a lobbyist?

That's the bigger question, given that Perry is the presumed frontrunner and Bachmann is destined to be an asterisk in this race.

Craig blogs daily at