June 20th, 2014
09:53 AM ET
9 years 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. Don DaMiddle

    Amazing! Only Ricky Bobby Perry...
    has the ability to "put his foot in his mouth" AND "step in it" AT THE SAME TIME.

    June 21, 2014 07:44 am at 7:44 am |
  2. independant jim

    this is the first time Perry stepped in it
    he generally wallows in it

    June 21, 2014 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
  3. CTYank

    Ah, yes, the well-worn states rights dodge. The one that kept slavery alive, and brought us the Civil War. Still alive and kicking, to disenfranchise voters who aren't "yours".
    Rick didn't step in poo. He IS poo. He'll never catch on.

    June 21, 2014 07:55 am at 7:55 am |
  4. Christopher Dow

    Yeah, Ricky, you stepped on it. But then, you're always stepping on—or in—it, aren't you.

    June 21, 2014 07:55 am at 7:55 am |
  5. Winston5

    Just for the Daily Show clips alone: RUN, RICK, RUN!

    June 21, 2014 07:56 am at 7:56 am |
  6. Pat in IL

    He already proved how dumb, racist, and intolerant he is, so why does he keep opening his mouth? Anyone who ever voted for him has to be extremely embarrassed by now.

    June 21, 2014 07:57 am at 7:57 am |
  7. Optimist5

    These Tea Party types say what they really believe and then backtrack when they see that the majority of people think otherwise. Nothing sincere about their beliefs, just political correctness.

    June 21, 2014 08:05 am at 8:05 am |
  8. marine5484

    So is that three things orrrrrr? Well I have three things. You said it, then you doubled down, THEN you say oops it was a mistake and apologize. So tell me Perry. Which one of your sponsors said redact or lose funding?

    June 21, 2014 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  9. John

    For all saying "what does that make the Texans who voted for him?" – It's almost as pathetic as those who voted for Obama. Just imagine- Perry was the least of the evils. I wish I could understand the ignorance of those in love with the chosen one. Texas is enjoying growth, low unemployment, no state income taxes, etc. What has OWE-bama done for us?

    June 21, 2014 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  10. budshot

    What was the name of his 'ranch' in Texas?

    This idiot 'stepped in it' decades ago and hasn't found his way out of it.

    June 21, 2014 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  11. Lizzie

    Maybe Gov.Perry is VP Bidens Brother????????

    June 21, 2014 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  12. matt

    Be proud Texas, thats youre representation. Texas should remove itself from the union like he said they would.

    June 21, 2014 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  13. Lizzie

    Clint H
    Most people don't know but Texas is actually 3rd on the most indebted state. At a debt of $485B and growing, I've got to say someone later on down the road will have to pay it down.
    -–keep dreaming,

    June 21, 2014 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  14. Chris W

    It is refreshing that a politician admitted he made a mistake, but it belies his true feelings. Honest mistake or Freudian slip? I am thinking Freudian slip.

    June 21, 2014 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  15. kristine weibel

    He did not apologize, nor did we (Texans) expect him to. He is such a hypocrite! He says we should be focus on jobs and not social issues, Really? Ask any women in Texas whose reproductive/health care has been totally taken away from them. Perry hates gays, women, Latino's and every other minority. Again, he did not apologize.

    June 21, 2014 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  16. Trey McKandles

    Stop bashing an entire state because of some Republican fools. Ann Richards, Barbara Jordon, Willie Nelson, Henry Cisneros, Janis Joplin, Wendy Davis, Molly Ivins,Dan Rather, Gene Rodenberry, Scott Joplin, Tommy Tune.
    Also Texans. And that's far from an exhaustive list.

    June 21, 2014 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  17. elucidated1

    I'm just hoping that Perry runs for President again. He is a perfect GOP candidate.

    June 21, 2014 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  18. realoldguy

    Sorry, but glasses don't make this red-neck twit look more intelligent. And he'll never be President - after two Wars for Nothing the rest of the country is sick and tired of Texas, and "The South" in general.

    June 21, 2014 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  19. Raymond Layland

    Fellow Texan.......Mr. Perry is like any other politician. They lick their finger stick it into the wind and say what they think will fly. We are captive to this behavior. As Texans and Americans we need to find leaders who have a plan that is viable and sticks to it.

    June 21, 2014 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  20. sandra

    He didn't step in it, he is it.

    June 21, 2014 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  21. smgordon

    stepped in it? ... he's been swimming in it for a long while now

    June 21, 2014 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  22. floop

    No Rick, you slipped up by giving us another insight into your nasty petty little mind.

    June 21, 2014 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  23. davetharave

    Governor Perry, with all due respect sir, you knew you were stepping in it when you stepped in it. You knew what you were saying was wrong then, but you said it anyway Why ? Because it's what you really believe, and no amount of recall after the fact can change that. You beliefs are shaped by a religiously inspired old-world view that is ultra conservative in nature and tea party inspired as a means of advancing your cause. You have no hope of ever being POTUS and ought to remain in Texas far away from the rest of the country.

    June 21, 2014 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  24. Gail

    Texans aren't stupid or backward. Perry is a moron for his closeminded, bible beating statements – his opinion is not what the majority of the State believe. Before you shoot off your mouth, why don't you visit Texas and figure out that we're not like him.

    June 21, 2014 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
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