Texas Gov. Rick Perry said he “stepped right in it” when he compared homosexuality to alcoholism during a visit to San Francisco last week.
“I got asked about issues, and instead of saying 'you know what, we need to be a really respectful and tolerant country to everybody, and get back to talking about, 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 during an event hosted by the Christian Science Monitor. “I readily admit I stepped right in it.”
The phrase is a familiar apology for Perry; after the infamous “oops” moment during his 2012 presidential campaign, the Texas governor told reporters “I'm glad I had my boots on tonight. I stepped in it out there.”
During an appearance at the Commonwealth Club of California last week, Perry said that, like alcoholics, gay people can “decide” to act on their inclinations.
“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,” he said.
The comment made national headlines and prompted condemnation from gay rights groups. A subsequent tough interview on CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” also did not go well for Perry, who said he neither “condones” nor “condemns” what he referred to as the gay “lifestyle.”
Perry is considering a reprise of his 2012 White House run in 2016.
First published June 19 2014, 11:41 AM
Carrie Dann is a national political writer for NBCNews.com. She has worked for NBC and NBCNews.com since 2006. Dann writes about politics and Congress. Dann rejoined the web team after 18 months as a campaign reporter for NBC News, covering presidential and vice presidential candidates during the 2012 election. She also covered the 2007-2008 presidential campaign for NBC, including extensive reporting on the Iowa caucuses.
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Prior to her work at NBCNews.com, Dann was a staff reporter at CongressDaily, where she covered lobbying and government reform.
A Virginia native, she now lives in Washington, D.C.