(CNN) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry is dialing back his earlier remark that seemed to suggest he was open to secession, telling reporters Thursday his state is "part of a great union."
"I was kinda thinking that, maybe the same people who hadn't been reading the constitution right were reading that article and they got the wrong impression about what I said," he told reporters as in the Texas State House.
"Clearly, I stated that we have a great union. And Texas is part of a great union. I see no reason for that to change. I think that may not be the exact quote, but that is, in essence what I said," he added.
Perry's original comments on the matter came Wednesday at a "Tea Party" even in Austin, when he railed against the federal government for what he said were infringements of states' rights and repeated violations of the 10th amendment of the Constitution - the provision that establishes Federalism. (Video below: Perry fires up 'Tea Party' crowd)
"There's a lot of different scenarios," Perry said Wednesday as crowd members shouted calls for secession. "We've got a great union. There's absolutely no reason to dissolve it. But if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, you know, who knows what might come out of that."
In clarifying his remarks Thursday, Perry also said he has "never been prouder of Texans" for standing up to Washington, DC.
"I think you will see more and more this type of response to a government that is rather unresponsive to the people of this country and Texas was right at the forefront of that yesterday," he said.
Meanwhile, Texas Democrats have sharply criticized Perry's original comment, calling it an "attack on our country."
"It is the ultimate anti-American statement," State Rep. Jim Dunnam of Waco told reporters Thursday.