June 20th, 2014
09:53 AM ET
7 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. Francisco

    Texans as a whole are not stupid idiots. However, it would appear, those who wish to be in the public eye are moronic, like this one.

    June 20, 2014 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  2. Graceann M

    "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.

    What the hell kind of sentence is this?

    June 20, 2014 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  3. sftommy

    Bad Dog!


    Somebody go rub his nose in it, maybe he'll learn

    June 20, 2014 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |

    Rick Perry & Rainer Wolfcastle
    when GOP presents comic characters for political office, do we laugh or just shake our heads?

    June 20, 2014 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  5. MilitaryAF

    He doesn't just step in it, he ROLLS in it.

    June 20, 2014 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  6. txan

    Every time these half-wits make a misstatement they then default to "this should be left up to the states."

    June 20, 2014 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  7. Skeptic

    Stepped in it?

    He lives in it.

    June 20, 2014 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  8. bill

    I'm ashamed that we have elected two of the biggest idiots for Texas governor in dubya and perry. These two guys are like dumb and dumber. The GOP must have worked hard to disenfranchise most of the voters because I just do not see how a majority of 22 million Texas could have elected these fools. All of the GOP precinct redistricting and voter ID laws are really paying off.

    June 20, 2014 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  9. Johnny

    Gay is not right I don't care who you are. If all we were all gay we would be extinct.

    June 20, 2014 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  10. Daniel

    Republicans are ignorant on social issues. Democrats are ignorant on the economy. He has a record that no democrat can match on either topic. Of course democrats only focus on his personal beliefs. And if you think he doesn't deserve credit for Texas' economy, Obama sure as heck can't take credit.

    June 20, 2014 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  11. Sdgman

    Why are his comments even covered? He is utterly irrelevant and has no chance of winning his own party's nomination let alone a national election.

    June 21, 2014 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  12. Marcus

    I'm a Texan and I have never voted for this clown. We've been trying to get a Democratic elected for years now but there seems to a lot more red necks than smart people here. Not to mention the GOP has rigged all the districts it seems.

    June 21, 2014 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  13. innerfish

    Perry's not stupid. He just has bad luck when it comes to thinking.

    June 21, 2014 12:52 am at 12:52 am |
  14. Alex

    I live in Texas and do not back any of Perry's remarks. He is clearly out of touch. But to generalize an entire state of people over his comments is wrong – even if he is the elected governor. Ironically, many who are generalizing Texans based on this man's comments stand strongly against generalizations of the gay population (for example) based on a single person's controversial remarks. With that said, for those of you who think that Texans as a while feel this way, I assure you this is the not the case, and Perry just wrote his own ticket to obscurity.

    June 21, 2014 01:28 am at 1:28 am |
  15. Tomas

    A 10 watt light bulb is more brighter than this guy...

    June 21, 2014 01:30 am at 1:30 am |
  16. strangways

    another village idiot from the Great State of Texas. they're two for two!

    June 21, 2014 01:33 am at 1:33 am |
  17. bp

    Ask Perry why nearly 30% of Texas' population is without health insurance (BTW, it's easier to enable an "economic miracle" when you abandon the poor) and he'll pivot to jobs, too.

    June 21, 2014 02:28 am at 2:28 am |
  18. Chaifreak

    After reading these comments now I understand why and how that man was elected, talking about that guy in the wh, stupid is what stupid does!
    If people don't like what happens in Texas then get out!! Also if you need a job or you job is sent to Texas and you are a liberal do us a favor move some where else. We do not want you EVER!!!!!

    June 21, 2014 02:38 am at 2:38 am |
  19. Chuck

    Don't be fooled. This man is a horrible person.

    June 21, 2014 02:51 am at 2:51 am |
  20. amb

    He wants to be President but it takes him THREE tries to tell us what he thinks we want to hear instead of what he actually believes. If he stuck to original position I'd disagree with him but at least respect him for tasking a position on the issue.

    June 21, 2014 06:29 am at 6:29 am |
  21. iamtoscanini

    The GOPER debates line up is looking good. Perry, Cain, Romney, Paul (different one this time) Santorum, (is Newt in or out?) so far will all be back. Could be that some real comedic entertainment is in store for the American public.

    June 21, 2014 07:04 am at 7:04 am |
  22. Amy

    Funny how having an opinion that some may differ with (including myself) brings out all the 1st Amendment lovers

    June 21, 2014 07:26 am at 7:26 am |
  23. Mr Braswell

    Texans love Bush and Perry, now what does that says about Texans?

    June 21, 2014 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  24. TAJ

    "And people wanted to elect this genius as President? Texas deserves him!"

    Yeah, we got Obama instead.

    June 21, 2014 07:34 am at 7:34 am |
  25. Randy

    Perry for President ... No way. Perry correct on his views of immoral behavior ... Absolutely. For those who think society has the final word on morality (right and wrong), you couldn't more deceived.

    June 21, 2014 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
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