AUSTIN, Tex.--Governor and Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry is proud of Texas, often bragging that it's an economic powerhouse.
Certainly, the numbers don't lie. Perry's Texas ranks 2nd in the nation in GDP and as a state, the Lone Star State ranks around 12th in the world between Russia and South Korea.
Perry can also boast a poverty rate that grew faster than the national average last year, and at over 18%, Texas sits at Number 6 in the nation. It does, however, rank first in the U.S. in the percentage of citizens living without health insurance. Texas and its good neighbor New Mexico can crow about the fact that more than one in four citizens are not insured.
Texas is also in a dead tie with Mississippi for the title of Highest Percentage of Workers Earning Minimum Wage, coming in at just under 10%.
Experts say that the Federal Government may well have to consider the grave repercussions of Perry not being elected.
"Perry could very well see to it that Texas secede from the nation," said Ferguson Michaels, adjunct instructor of U.S. history at Harfold State College. "If he doesn't get the Republican nod, he may take his show on the road, and what a travesty it would be to lose these statistics.
"But Perry shouldn't assume that he'll be elected president of Texas. I hear Chuck Norris is interested in the job."