White House Watch: Rick Perry

The eyes of Texas, and the nation, are upon Rick Perry as SFGN profiles his potential candidacy in our weekly White House Watch.

James Richard “Rick” Perry, 65, served as Governor of Texas for fifteen years (2000-2015) and is mentioned as a possible candidate for the Republican Party’s nomination for U.S. President. Perry campaigned for the party nod in 2012, but stumbled in the debate process and eventually dropped out of the race.

Perry angered the LGBT community during his 2012 campaign when he released a video stating, “there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military, but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school.” As Texas Governor, Perry supported the state’s same-sex anti-sodomy law, which was eventually struck down in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Lawrence v. Texas (2003) and he has defended the state’s current ban on same-sex marriage.

In his first book, “On My Honor,” published in 2008, Perry compared homosexuality to alcoholism.

If he launches another bid for the Oval Office, Perry will likely put forth a narrative centered on security and controlling the Texas-Mexico border. In a January speech at the Freedom Summit in Des Moines, Iowa, in which he was heckled from the audience, Perry spoke of the need to combat Mexican drug cartels.

A fifth generation Texan, Perry was the first in his family to go to college and earn a degree. He served in the U.S. Air Force, flying c-130 tactical airlifts and began his political career as a Democrat. Governor Perry is married to his childhood sweetheart, Anita Thigpen, and the couple have two children.


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