June 20th, 2014
09:53 AM ET
5 months ago

Texas governor: I stepped in it

(CNN) – Gov. Rick Perry admitted he fumbled the ball when he recently compared homosexuality to alcoholism.

"I stepped right in it," the Texas Republican said Thursday at an event sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor, which also aired on C-SPAN.

The potential presidential candidate, who was unsuccessful in his 2012 White House bid, didn't necessarily distance himself from the comments or apologize, but said he'd rather be talking about other issues.

"We need to be a really respectful and tolerant country to everybody...Whether you're gay or straight, you need to be having a job, and those are the focuses that I want to be involved with," he said.

"We're an incredibly diverse mosaic of a country," Perry continued. "A lot of these issues need to be decided at the state level."

Christie: Perry is 'wrong' on homosexuality-alcoholism comparison

The day before, on Wednesday, Perry stood by the comments on CNN's "Crossfire" when he was asked by co-host Stephanie Cutter whether he believes homosexuality is a disease.

"I think my position has been fairly clear on that for a substantial period of time," Perry said, pivoting quickly to the economy.

The focus should be on American jobs, Perry said, "and that is not on these social issues."

"I think the social issues should be decided state-by-state rather than being something in Washington, D.C. to try to make one-size-fits-all."

At a speech last week in San Francisco, the longtime Republican governor – who ran for the White House in 2012 and is considering another bid in 2016 – was asked whether he thought homosexuality was a disorder.

"I may have the genetic coding that I'm inclined to be an alcoholic, but I have the desire not to do that – and I look at the homosexual issue the same way," Perry said during that event, immediately sparking backlash from Democrats and gay rights organizations.

CNN's Ashley Killough and Dana Davidsen contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2016 • Rick Perry • Texas
soundoff (499 Responses)
  1. kuntz

    The man spoke his mind. Is there anything wrong with that?

    June 20, 2014 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  2. kinainabudhabi

    I didn't realize that the qualifications for president are now based on whether you approve of the gay agenda or not.

    June 20, 2014 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  3. chris

    Any repub. that votes for this kind of bull stiuff, I say BLAME YOURSELF!!! Ok Herman Cain said that, but I agree with him. You make the mess you can live in it. You STUPID PERSON Learn to read . Know the truth it will set you FREE. Of REPUB. LIES or foot in mouth crap.

    June 20, 2014 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  4. Sam

    Perry stepped in it a long time ago. He's just swirling around in the pile for old-time sake.

    June 20, 2014 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  5. clownshoes Mcgun from Kentucky

    Rick Perry has about as much to offer as president as the clowns from the circus. At least the clowns are trying to be stupid to make people laugh...when Perry talks...its not funny, it's sad.

    June 20, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  6. til

    he's just shown he knows nothing about being gay or about being an alcoholic.

    June 20, 2014 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  7. LouAZ

    Seems that all Politicians from Tejas have foot in mouth disease. Must be something in the water.

    June 20, 2014 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  8. scarf

    "We're an incredibly diverse mosaic of a country," Perry continued. "A lot of these issues need to be decided at the state level."
    ====================================================================================

    In Perry's mind, things like slavery.....

    June 20, 2014 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  9. Pookie Adams

    Perry is a closeted gay, who was seen in gay bars in Mexico City, fifteen years ago.

    June 20, 2014 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  10. scary

    He said what he truly believes to be true first. Now we see him tell lies to cover his true beliefs. All he is doing now is lying about his real beliefs to gain favor with the people he angered in an attempt to regain votes. It's these lying people that we need to weed out of government. Though I disagree with his initial assessment about gays, I would respect him more if he didn't start lying to cover it all up now.

    June 20, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  11. paul

    Hes a real idiot... he has no sweet clue. obviously he has no one close to him who is gay. he thinks its a choice...
    WRONG. what a sweet idiot.

    June 20, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  12. GODZILLA1

    He really, REALLY, thinks he is qualified to be President. He is the only person on the planet who can make Shrub look intelligent.

    June 20, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  13. Joltin Joe

    Well, we know he's a hateful idiot. It seems obvious to most people outside of Texas...but he is elected by them...which must mean they endorse his positions....so what the heck is wrong with them?

    June 20, 2014 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  14. Gordon

    Rick Perry walks right behind Rick Santorum, and he certainly stepped in it, all right.

    June 20, 2014 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  15. Name Peter Bishop

    Who cares. Gays aren't his demographic and will never be. Plus, he needs to stay in Texas.

    June 20, 2014 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  16. Dan

    Gays where never going to vote for him anyway so really does not matter what he says

    June 20, 2014 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  17. Durundal

    the only thing more ignorant and foolish then this man are the people who voted him in.

    June 20, 2014 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  18. houtex1

    Rick Perry.....always good for a laugh. He's one of America's greatest jokes!

    June 20, 2014 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  19. Dan

    What is it with conservative Christians hating on gay people all the time.Even the"love the sinner but hate the sin" is phony.If they loved gays so much then why discriminate against them?

    June 20, 2014 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  20. B. Lake

    No Rick, you didn't step in it, you're swimming in it. And no, this should NOT be decided at the state level. We fought a very bloody war about 150 years ago to establish that a state does NOT have the right to legalize human slavery or the right to define or restrict human civil rights. Now if all your cowboys want to go ahead and marry their horses, then Texas can go ahead and regulate that.

    June 20, 2014 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  21. rlj

    I guess "I stepped in it" is the new term for "my true beliefs slipped out".

    June 20, 2014 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  22. IrishinToronto

    "We need to be a really respectful and tolerant country to everybody...Whether you're gay or straight, you need to be having a job, and those are the focuses that I want to be involved with," he said.

    Rick, dear, are you aware that it's legal in Texas to fire someone or deny them a job becase they are Gay? Will you be fixing that law?

    June 20, 2014 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  23. Enough

    It's a choice to live a disordered, unnatural and unhealthy lifestyle.

    June 20, 2014 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  24. Denny Crane, Esq.

    I notice he threw in the "secret password" of bigots: "A lot of these issues need to be decided at the state level" and
    "I think the social issues should be decided state-by-state rather than being something in Washington, D.C. to try to make one-size-fits-all." What that phrase means to the Far Right is "It ain't gonna happen south of the Mason-Dixon line or in Kansas, Missouri, or Kentucky.

    Gov. Perry – a treaty was signed in the Appomattox Courthouse, in 1865, that settled this issue for all time. Federal law is supreme. The States may not deny their citizens rights granted by the federal government.

    June 20, 2014 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  25. ireuel

    2016 is a long ways away. Lots can happen, oh course not for Governor Perry. Seems like a good guy, but will not be President. I get humor watching the banter back and fore between the commentators here. at these "News" sites. Both side are so intrenched in the talking points of their own side and miss and reality to the situation this once great country is in. I opened my mind up years ago and came to the conclusion that both sides are responsible. Sorry if sometimes I am a little harder on the left here, but as they say "When in Rome". Yes that's right your wrong to. Have a nice day and turn off all News opinion shows for about a week then see how you feel. Very liberating to see no one in Washington is really on your side except in prepared talking points. We are so screwed.

    June 20, 2014 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
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