As you read TIME’s cover profile of Texas governor and presumed GOP presidential front-runner Rick Perry, you might be interested in an unfiltered excerpt of Perry’s views on top issues:

Do you feel pressure to temper some of your rhetoric, like calling the Obama Administration socialist?

No, I still believe they are socialist. Their policies prove that almost daily. Look, when all the answers emanate from Washington, D.C., whether it’s education policy or health care policy, that is, on its face, socialism.

But you know there’s concern that you use controversial rhetoric that riles voters up, like calling Social Security a “Ponzi scheme.”

I suspect that’s in the eye of the beholder. There may be someone who is an established Republican who circulates in the cocktail circuit that would find some of my rhetoric to be inflammatory. But I think the American citizens are just tired of this political correctness. They want a decisive leader. I’m comfortable that the rhetoric I have used was spot on. Calling Social Security a Ponzi scheme has been used for years. No one gets confused about the point I was making, that we have a system that is now broken. We need to have an adult conversation. Don’t try to scare the senior citizens and those who are on Social Security that it’s somehow going to go away with the mean old heartless Republican.