(CNN) – Rick Perry says that if he's elected president, he'll end what he calls President Barack Obama's "war on religion."
Perry makes the comments in a new TV commercial that's sure to create controversy.
"I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm a Christian, but you don't need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there's something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can't openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school," says the Texas governor and Republican White House candidate. "As President, I'll end Obama's war on religion. And I'll fight against liberal attacks on our religious heritage. Faith made America strong. It can make her strong again."
The Perry campaign tells CNN the 30-second spot starts running in "heavy rotation" statewide in Iowa Wednesday. The state's Jan. 3 caucuses kick off the presidential primary and caucus calendar. The campaign says the ad will also run on cable television on the Fox News Channel.
The 30-second spot is slotted to run statewide starting Wednesday in Iowa. The state's Jan. 3 caucuses kick off the presidential primary and caucus calendar.
In an email release touting the new commercial, the Perry campaign lists headlines from mainstream, conservative, and religious reporting sites to illustrate what it calls the "Obama Administration's war on religion." Those examples include the president's move to stop defending the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act and his exclusion of the word "God" from his Thanksgiving speech.
In an interview Wednesday with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Perry said he stood by the ad.
"The administration is clearly sending messages to people of faith, and organizations of faith, that we're not going to support you with federal dollars," Perry said. "I'm very comfortable with that ad, for one thing. My faith is a part of me, and the values I learned in my Christian upbringing will affect my governing."
CNN has reached out to Obama's re-election team for reaction to the new Perry ad.
Perry is a Methodist and has not shied away from touting his faith during his presidential bid . In an earlier campaign commercial, Perry described himself as a "man of faith."
Social conservative voters are influential in race for the GOP presidential nomination, especially in Iowa and South Carolina, the first southern state to vote.
- Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @PSteinhauserCNN
@king, @aaron – the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Atheism is a religion (08/19/2005).
There is a war on religion?! Where can I sign up?
It is the Republicans who are, and always have, waged war on religion - every religion except evangelical Christianity, that is.
Perry and the other extreme righters just want to force their religion on everyone. Same old scare tactics to try to detract from the real issues, jobs and the economy.
He wants to get rid of the department of education? Now I know why.
That is ALL Perry can come up with? First, class war, now war on religion? So far, his dedication to christianity hasn't brought him much enlightenment, brains or a plan to govern this country. Besides, Obama , the known "muslim" would only be making war on Perry's religion. So his point of view is kinda subjective.
I do remember the other texan, the "god fearing christian man" who launched an unjust war and had people fry in the chair. Must be in the water down there, eh? God help us if another 'god fearing man' makes it to the White House.
I live in Texas, and trust me, if Perry got to the oval office, he would wage a war on education. Texas has been 49th in state support for years. Christianity is alive and well and needs no "help" from Rick Perry.
Hopefully my original comment will eventually get posted...
itsonlyfair is exactly right. I am a Catholic who tends to vote Republican, but the far right's obsession with "freedom of religion" really has nothing to do with freedom at all. They want to see our leaders constantly espousing Christian beliefs, and they frankly have no interest and do not believe in the separation of church and state. It has become so routine that Fox has already started its "War on Christmas" routine, which is now an annual occurrence. You will not see these right wingers defending the rights of any other religion either. I for one am comfortable enough in my faith that I do not need to see my elected officials espousing that faith for me. A great reference for this issue would be to watch alan alda's speech at the end of the west wing episode "in god we trust"
"...and kids can't celebrate Christmas or openly pray in school." Really Gov. Perry? I look around me and see Christmas decorations everywhere and people celebrating Christmas. I have not heard of any law that prevents a kid from bowing his head at his desk and saying a silent prayer. What in the hell are you talking about?
Didn't the 1st Amendment address that a LONG time ago?
I stopped dead in my tracks this morning when this commercial came on my TV. Rick Perry is a Methodist? That's scary, he wouldn't be well accepted in my Iowa congregation. I can not believe he would be supported within his campaign to make this commercial. I certainly hope he has no chance of getting the nomination. I am utterly terrified at how scary all the GOP candidates are. I can't believe he said "the gays"....really??? He makes it sound like they are running around the military in pink skirts and high heels. OMG.
In other words, he plans to legislate his religious point of view. Just never mind about that whole freedom of religion thing.
Ok now, lets’ take a look at this. Yes faith made America, but the point is that it was the freedom to be whatever faith that you wanted. As someone who does not believe in your god I feel it lifts a vial off of the issues. If you take god out of the government it will run smoother. I am not saying stop supporting religion because as long as there are people out there, there will be a "higher power". But god does not run this country man does so we need to stop looking at "god" and start looking at the men and women that are going to lead this nation, because at the end of the day a giant hand coming out of the sky and fixing all of our problems just isn't going to happen. Deal with it.
yeah, but what obongo means is ALLAH BLESS ISLAM!!! that is why he was seen carrying a copy of the book written by a muslim called, "The Post American World". wake up america, we have a fox in the henhouse in our manchurian whitehouse.
Yeah, this country was founded on freedom, freedom of religion. Not just christians. The Christian right are the meanest, down right nastiest people I've ever known.
Religion is a political tool used in the desperate last gasps proceeding defeat.
As far as I'm concerned, Perry would be a good candidate not for President, but for poster child for the morning after pill.
Perry is an IDIOT! What else would you expect this cranial gargage to say?? However, Perry is conducting a war of sanity, and this is for real. He actually raise the IQ level 50 points of his friends pet dog so he can communicate with the pet.
Oh, except Islam. Screw them dang Muslims!
What is HELL, Rick Perry is a CULT NOW!
I m Christian.
nope...not posted. awesome. Thanks CNN for not allowing me to contribute to the discussion.
Yeah, that's what we need. A government run on religion. Same crap that starts all wars. You're a jerk, Perry. Come up with some REAL issues to run against Obama and quit shoving your damn religion down everyone's throat.
Screw religion, it's rich, corrupted and phony! Let end religions' war on equal rights for all citizens!
Personally, if a gay person is willing to be a soldier and risk life and limb for my freedom and safety, well, God Bless them.
I'll let HIM decide what is a sin in a persons personal life, not any man on earth. Men are fallible, weak and lead into temptation, and I would say that the more wealth a person has, the more this happens. I do know that many biblical figures have spoken against mindless hatred, this should include gays.
If Rick Perry is really a Christian, I would be thinking about the day I have to meet him myself. Those executions you condoned? You failed right there. In modern society, there is no reason why a monster can't be locked up in Super-max, let out for an hour a day, and be removed from society without killing.