Contentious political debates, especially presidential ones, aren't abnormal, but more often than not they begin and end with a friendly smile and handshake.
We know that Rick Perry and Ron Paul have been taking shots at each other lately. And last night's debate gave the two a chance to talk their smack person. But BLAZE reader Okie from Muskogee wonders if it got personal between the two Texans. He says to us:
Could you give us insight as to what had Rick Perry so angry in this photo he grabbed Ron Paul? There are several pictures showing Rick getting upset and approaching Ron during breaks and after the debate. If indeed it was Rick being aggressive and being a Richard, could THE BLAZE please report it to show how Perry could behave and represent us as president?
Here's the picture Okie is talking about, which was also headlined on the Drudge Report:
Here's another taken from from RonPaul.com:
We haven't seen any reports that there was any behind-the-scenes animosity between Perry and Paul. All the tension has been public, thus far. So, it's unclear as to whether this snap shot is any indication of a tiny-tempered Perry.
What we can say is that this photo, if nothing else, does reinforce the images both men have in the news media. Perry is a boot-wearing, tough-talking capital M-A-N. Paul, 76, is 15 years Perry's senior and kind of a pipsqueak in terms of presence.
That's not a knock on Paul. Just the truth.
Ron Paul's campaign did not return request for comment. We couldn't get comment from anyone in the Perry camp.
What do the rest of you think? Does the picture show a short-fused Perry scolding Paul? Or is it kind of an accident captured at just the right moment by the photographer?