Rick Perry says Obama is surrounded by smart people but makes dumb decisions, Christine O’Donnell was disinvited from a tea party rally featuring Sarah Palin, and there’s no evidence that Jews think Michele Bachmann is Jewish.

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* In an interview with conservative radio host Sean Hannity today, Texas Gov. Rick Perry appeared to reference a a Politico article that questioned his intelligence. “What’s dumb is to oversee an economy that has lost that many millions of jobs,” he said. “[Obama] has listened to all the academics around him, plenty of smart people, but nobody who has wisdom.” Perry also defended a 1993 letter to then-First Lady Hillary Clinton praising her health-care reform efforts, saying the actual plan wasn’t formed yet.

* Another candidate is in the Wisconsin Republican Senate race — state Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald is running for the seat held by retiring Sen. Herb Kohl (D). The stage is set for a bitter primary between Fitzgerald, former Rep. Mark Neumann and former governor Tommy Thompson.

* Erstwhile Delaware Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell will not speak at the same Iowa tea party rally as former Alaska governor Sarah Palin on Saturday, it turns out. Tea Party of America withdrew O’Donnell’s invitation after getting “emails from a lot of tea party folks that were very disappointed that she would be speaking.” Palin endorsed O’Donnell just before the latter’s primary victory last cycle; the inexperienced, gaffe-prone candidate lost to now-Sen. Chris Coons (D) by nearly 20 points. A Palin spokesman said she had nothing to do with the decision.

* The former chief of staff to Colin Powell says Dick Cheney “was president for all practical purposes for the first term of the Bush administration" and “fears being tried as a war criminal.” Col. Lawrence Wilkerson is responding to the former vice president’s new memoir, in which Cheney claims Powell undermined President Bush.

* Several gunshots were fired at the Houston office of Rep. Gene Green (D-Texas) today. It wasn’t clear whether the shots were aimed at the congressman’s office or not. They likely came from a BB gun or a pellet gun, according to the Houston Police Department. No one was reported injured.

* There is no evidence that Jews are flocking to Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) under a mistaken belief that the Republican presidential candidate is Jewish, despite a New York Post story this morning suggesting as much. A Bachmann spokesman said he had not heard any such talk.


* The White House is taking issue with Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), who said yesterday that any new emergency funds allocated for Hurricane Irene should be offset by spending cuts. “I guess I can’t help but say that I wish that commitment to looking for offsets had been held by the House majority leader and others, say, during the previous administration when they ran up unprecedented bills and never paid for them,” spokesman Jay Carney told reporters. today.

* On Labor Day, Mitt Romney will headline a major tea party rally for the first time. The former Massachusetts governor is scheduled to appear in Manchester, New Hampshire this weekend. Romney declined to attend a forum held by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) the same day.

* Michigan state Sen. Bert Johnson (D) announced his bid for the state’s 13th district today, setting up a primary with one of the longest-serving members of the House. Rep. John Conyers (D) currently represents the 14th, but his district was basically dismantled and he is expected to run for reelection in the new 13th. Johnson decided to challenge Conyers back in July, saying “I am the 21st-century version of what a Congressman needs to be for his district.”

* Montana Attorney General Steve Bullock (D) is expected to announce his 2012 gubernatorial campaign next week. State Sen. Larry Jent is already in the Democratic primary to replace Gov. Brian Schweitzer (D), who is term-limited, but Bullock is the heavy favorite. Five Republicans are already angling for the job: Former Rep. Rick Hill, county commissioner James O'Hara, security consultant Neil Livingstone, former state Sen. Ken Miller, and former state Sen. Corey Stapleton. Hill is the favorite in that primary.


Finally, a love song for bulldozers.

Rachel Weiner and Aaron Blake