Texas Gov. Rick Perry said today that New York’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage is “fine with me,” the Associated Press reports.
Perry said he’s “an unapologetic social conservative” and personally opposes same-sex marriage. But he said he believes so strongly in state’s rights and the 10th amendment that he supports New York’s decision.
“Our friends in New York six weeks ago passed a statute that said marriage can be between two people of the same sex. And you know what? That’s New York, and that’s their business, and that’s fine with me,” Perry said, according to the AP. “That is their call. If you believe in the 10th Amendment, stay out of their business.”
Perry, who’s likely to seek the GOP presidential nomination, has been under fire of late from LGBT advocates for his decision to host a day of prayer funded by the American Family Association, listed as an anti-gay hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The AP says Perry’s comments today about same-sex marriage could hurt him among tea party voters, who’ve already criticized his not-so-conservative record on other issues. But the comments could also help him among moderates who are increasingly supportive of LGBT equality, especially in a general election.
Perry made the comments to a group of several hundred GOP donors in Aspen, Colo.