By msnbc.com's Michael O'Brien
A senior Senate Republican suggested Wednesday that Texas Gov. Rick Perry's (R) erred in delivering a speech critical of President Obama's handling of Israel the day before the president was set to speak on Israeli-Palestinian relations at the United Nations.
Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said that Perry could have stood to wait a bit before delivering his blistering critique of Obama, in which the Republican presidential frontrunner accused Obama of "appeasement" of the Palestinian Authority in its bid for statehood.
"I think Perry, if he had a chance to do it over again, probably wouldn't do that," Alexander, a two-time candidate for president in 1996 and 2000, said on MSNBC's Daily Rundown.
"The answer to the question is yes," Alexander said when asked if Perry should have waited a few days. "But let me let Mitt Romney and Rick Perry duke that out."
Obama addressed the United Nations General Assembly Wednesday in part to warn gathered delegates against approving statehood for Palestinians; Obama said that a solution could only emerge through negotiations.
The Tennessee senator did offer praise, though, for Perry's defense of his record on immigration before a potentially hostile audience at a Tea Party debate last week in Florida. Perry seemed "very presidential" in that moment, Alexander said.
Sen. Lamar Alexander discusses his decision to step down from the No. 3 position in the Senate GOP leadership in January.