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Republicans hate public employees. But they hate retired public employees even more. And they hate most the public employees who are still on the job while they take a public employee pension at the same time. So how will this newest revelation, of Rick Perry’s double-dipping, convince the GOP base voters that Rick Perry should rise back to the top of the primary polls again?

Mr. Perry — who isn’t stepping down as governor — nevertheless was able to officially “retire” this year for benefits purposes, a move that gives him about $90,000 more in annual retirement compensation on top of his $150,000 salary as governor.

The move may open him up to criticism from rivals, who can point to Mr. Perry’s recent suggestions that the retirement age for Social Security and the age eligibility for Medicare be raised — two government programs that many older Americans depend on to make ends meet.

Perry provides classic “everybody does it!” defense, calling his decision smart family estate planning:

“That’s a program that’s been in place for decades as far as I know,” he said at a coffee shop. “I would be surprised why someone would not take a retirement they were eligible for. That’s just kind of good estate planning in my opinion.”

(Note to NYT: Did Perry say ‘just kind of good’ or did he say ‘just kinda good??” Inquiring urban elite readers want to know.)