Now that Texas’ governor is a GOP candidate for president, opinions in his book — that Social Security is unconstitutional, for example — move into the spotlight.

Reporting from Washington— Texas Gov. Rick Perry, faulting much of what the federal government did in the 20th century, has called Social Security a “failure” and “an illegal Ponzi scheme” and also cast doubt on the constitutionality of federal laws on food safety, minimum wages, bans on child labor, environmental protection and Medicare.

“Ever since the dawn of the so-called Progressive movement over a century ago, liberals have used every tool at their disposal — including notably the Supreme Court — to wage a gradual war on the Constitution and the American way of life,” Perry wrote last year in “Fed Up! Our Fight to Save America from Washington.”

“Social Security is something we have been forced to accept for more than 70 years,” he said. “And there stands a crumbling monument to the failure of the New Deal … all at the expense of respect for the Constitution and limited government.”

Perry’s 191-page book drew little notice when it was published in November. But now that he is running for the Republican nomination for president, his views on Social Security and other federal programs will be carefully scrutinized.

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