Perry says he has a "great rapport" with Bush

September 22, 2011 - 10:00 PM
Republican Debate

Republican presidential candidates Texas Gov. Rick Perry, left, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, share a laugh during a Fox News/Google debate Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, Pool)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Rick Perry says he maintains a "great rapport" with former President George W. Bush, but he disagreed with Bush's efforts to reform education and create a prescription drug program under Medicare.

Perry dismissed reports that he had a tense relationship with Bush, whom he succeeded as Texas governor. Perry said during a Republican presidential debate that he was "very vocal" in his disagreement with the prescription drug program, which he called "very expensive."

Perry says he also opposed the No Child Left Behind reforms of the nation's education system. He said the federal government "has no business telling the states how to educate our children."

Political veterans in Texas, however, say the tiff goes back to 1995, when then-Governor Bush refused to appoint Perry's brother-in-law to the appeals court bench.