Rick Perry has joined Michele Bachmann (above), Tim Pawlenty, Rick Santorum, and Mitt Romney in signing an anti-gay marriage pledge drawn up by the National Organization for Marriage.
In signing the pledge candidates promise to:
Support and send to the states a federal marriage amendment defining marriage as one man and one woman; Defend DOMA in court; Appoint judges and an attorney general who will respect the original meaning of the Constitution; Appoint a presidential commission to investigate harassment of traditional marriage supporters; Support legislation that would return to the people of D.C. their right to vote for marriage.
NOM President Brian Brown issued the following statement:
"Kudos to Gov. Rick Perry for making it clear: he's a marriage champion! The purpose of NOM's Marriage Pledge is to move from vague values statements to concrete actions to protect marriage. Gov. Perry joins Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum as a signer of NOM Marriage Pledge. By doing so, Perry makes crystal clear that, contrary to the conventional wisdom, gay marriage is going to be a bigger issue in 2012 than it was in 2008, because the difference between the GOP nominee and Pres. Obama is going to be large and clear. We look forward to demonstrating that being for marriage is a winning position for a presidential candidate."
The AP notes: "Perry had said that though he doesn't support gay marriage personally, it is a states' rights issue. He even suggested New York's decision to legalize it was therefore fine with him."
Perry later told hate group leader Tony Perkins: “I probably needed to add a few words after that ‘it’s fine with me,’ and that it’s fine with me that a state is using their sovereign rights to decide an issue. Obviously gay marriage is not fine with me. My stance hasn’t changed.”