Rick Perry Quotes

Dumb quotes and gaffes by former Texas Gov. Rick Perry

Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks to the National Right to Life convention in 2013 in Grapevine, Texas
Stewart F. House/Getty Images

You're going to be noticed when you say something dumb when you're often in the public spotlight. The former governor and Presidental hopeful Rick Perry subjected himself to the spotlight often, and therefore found himself saying a few things he probably wishes he could take back.

Rick Perry Quotes

"I will tell you: It's three agencies of government, when I get there, that are gone: Commerce, Education and the — what's the third one there? Let's see. ... OK. So Commerce, Education and the — ... The third agency of government I would — I would do away with the Education, the ... Commerce and — let's see — I can't. The third one, I can't. Sorry. Oops."

  • Rick Perry, experiencing an epic onstage meltdown during a GOP debate, forgetting about his plan to cut the Department of Energy, Nov. 9, 2011.

"It's a good issue to keep alive. It's fun to poke at him."

  • Rick Perry, suggesting that President Obama's birth certificate is a fake, Oct. 26, 2011.

"Those of you that will be 21 by November the 12th, I ask for your support and your vote."

  • Rick Perry, flubbing the voting age (which has been 18 since 1971), as well as date of the Nov. 6 election.

"The reason that we fought the [American] Revolution in the 16th century — was to get away from that kind of onerous crown, if you will."

  • Rick Perry, getting the date of the American Revolution wrong by two centuries.

"No greater example of it than this administration sending millions of dollars into the solar industry, and we lost that money. I want to say it was over $500 million that went to the country Solyndra."

  • Rick Perry

"I trust those independent school districts to make those decisions better than eight unelected and, frankly, unaccountable judges."

  • Rick Perry, getting the number of Supreme Court justices wrong (there are nine).

"Is it the Mitt Romney that was on the side of — against the Second Amendment before he was for the Second Amendment? Was it — was before — he was before the social programs from the standpoint of — he was for standing up for Roe v. Wade before he was against first — Roe v. Wade?”

  • Rick Perry, fumbling over his attack lines against Romney at a GOP presidential debate, Sept. 22, 2011.

"It's a theory that's out there. It's got some gaps in it. In Texas we teach both Creationism and evolution."

  • Rick Perry, in response to a child who asked him if he believed in evolution during a campaign stop in New Hampshire, August 18, 2011.

"Texas is a unique place. When we came in the union in 1845, one of the issues was that we would be able to leave if we decided to do that. You know, my hope is that America and Washington in particular pays attention. We've got a great union. There is absolutely no reason to dissolve it. But if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, you know, who knows what may come out of that?"

  • Rick Perry, raising the prospect of Texas seceding while speaking to a reporter after a Tea Party rally, April 15, 2009.

"If this guy prints more money between now and the election. I don't know what y’all would do to him in Iowa, but we, we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas. Printing more money to play politics at this particular time in American history is almost treacherous — or treasonous in my opinion."

  • Rick Perry, suggesting on his first day campaigning for president that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke may be a traitor to his country, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, August 15, 2011.

"I don't think the federal government has a role in your children's education."

  • Rick Perry, at a campaign stop in Iowa, August 15, 2011.

“Young Hispanics in Texas can aspire to be the next Rolando Pablos, the chairman of the Texas racing commission; maybe the next Roberto de Hoyos, who heads our economic development shop; and one of my favorites, the head of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission Jose Cuevas. Is that awesome? That is the right job for that man."

  • Rick Perry, bombing with a joke about Jose Cuervo tequila while speaking before a Latino convention in Texas, June 23, 2011.

"You can always follow me on Tweeter."

  • Rick Perry, mistakenly referring to the social networking site Twitter in a videotaped message to a crowd of conservative bloggers and social networkers, Minneapolis, June 21, 2011.

"I think in America from time to time we have to go through some difficult times — and I think we’re going through those difficult economic times for a purpose, to bring us back to those Biblical principles of you know, you don't spend all the money. You work hard for those six years and you put up that seventh year in the warehouse to take you through the hard times. And not spending all of our money. Not asking for Pharaoh to give everything to everybody and to take care of folks because at the end of the day, it's slavery. We become slaves to government."

  • Rick Perry, June 2011.

"Juarez is reported to be the most dangerous city in America."

  • Rick Perry, referring to a city that is across the Texas border in Mexico, February 28, 2011.

"From time to time there are going to be things that occur that are acts of God that cannot be prevented."

  • Rick Perry, on the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, in 2010.

"I am a firm believer in intelligent design as a matter of faith and intellect, and I believe it should be presented in schools alongside the theories of evolution."

  • Rick Perry in 2010.

"Even if an alcoholic is powerless over alcohol once it enters his body, he still makes a choice to drink. And, even if someone is attracted to a person of the same sex, he or she still makes a choice to engage in sexual activity with someone of the same gender."

  • Rick Perry, writing in his 2008 book, On My Honor.

"George W. Bush did a incredible job in the presidency, defending us from freedom."

  • Rick Perry in 2010