What’s Brewing: Rick Perry’s first big flip-flop; Michele Bachmann says she doesn’t judge gays

Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:

1. Hours after plunging into the Republican presidential primary, Texas Gov. Rick Perry made his first big flip-flop. The Texas Tribune reports that Perry is backtracking from one of the few socially progressive moves he’s made as governor — an executive order in 2007 mandating the HPV vaccine for girls entering sixth grade. Until now, Perry has consistently defended the controversial executive order, which was overturned by the Legislature. But now that he’s running for president, his position has changed. “I signed an executive order that allowed for an opt-out, but the fact of the matter is that I didn’t do my research well enough to understand that we needed to have a substantial conversation with our citizenry,” Perry told a gathering in New Hampshire on Saturday. “But here’s what I learned: When you get too far out in front of the parade, they will let you know, and that’s exactly what our Legislature did, and I saluted it and I said, ‘Roger that, I hear you loud and clear.’ And they didn’t want to do it and we don’t, so enough said.”

2. Perry’s chief rival for tea party and evangelical support, Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, told CNN on Sunday that she would reinstate “don’t ask don’t tell.” But Bachmann mostly dodged questions about her virulently anti-gay record during NBC’s Meet the Press, declaring that, “I don’t judge [gays].” Watch the clip from Meet the Press below.

3. Indiana State Rep. Phillip Hinkle, the anti-gay Republican accused of hiring an 18-year-old male prostitute on Craigslist, faces growing pressure to resign.

—  John Wright

What’s Brewing: Uplifted by ‘The Response,’ Gov. Perry may announce presidential bid this week

Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:

1. More than 30,000 people are said to have attended “The Response,” Gov. Rick Perry’s day of prayer and fasting at Reliant Stadium in Houston on Saturday. Check out our coverage of the LGBT (and non-LGBT) responses to The Response here, here, here and here. For those who actually care what went on inside the stadium, we’ve posted some video below. The first segment is Perry’s speech in its entirety, which turned out to be rather political despite his assurances that it wouldn’t be. The second is a report from the Texas Tribune which indicates that not all attendees — including Perry — actually fasted on Saturday. And the third is a compilation from Right Wing Watch featuring some of the speakers at the event.

2. Now that The Response is over, Perry is likely to announce that he’s running for president as early as this week.

3. But not all Republicans are thrilled about Perry’s all-but-certain candidacy. During NBC’s Meet The Press on Sunday, GOP consultant Alex Castellanos called Perry “Sarah Palin in a skirt” and a “lighter” version of George W. Bush.

—  John Wright

Dick Armey makes a fool of himself

Okay, former U.S. Rep. Dick Armey has never been one of my favorite people, and I think it’s safe to say he’s never been any kind of friend to the LGBT community. (He’s the one who once referred to gay U.S. Rep. Barney Frank as “Barney Fag” and then claimed it was an unintentional slip. Whatever.)

But the clip below (taken from Rachel Maddow’s show on MSNBC) shows Armey at a recent “tea party” gathering outside the Capitol in Washington, D.C., protesting the health care reform. Armey was speaking at the rally and defending his former congressional colleague against the horrible lesbian Rachel Maddow, who had dared to disagree with Coburn on something during a recent “Meet the Press” show.

As pointed out on the blog LezGetReal, Maddow has a doctorate in political science from Oxford University (she was a Rhodes Scholar). Coburn is a doctor of medicine with a degree from the University of Oklahoma and is a practicing obstetrician. Armey has a doctorate in economics from North Texas State.

In his speech, Armey derides Maddow as someone with a degree in nothing that matters, and questions her qualifications to debate health care reform with Coburn, a practicing medical doctor. Only then, Maddow points out that she never debated health care reform with Coburn, and that instead, the only exchange between them was about the nasty and violent tone some Republican protests have been taken.

(Maybe it’s just me, but I would think that a doctorate in political science makes Maddow very qualified to debate the tone of politics in this country.)

Like I said, I have never liked Dick Armey, but I think he makes himself look pretty foolish here, first by mischaracterizing the discussion between Coburn and Maddow, by deriding Maddow’s qualifications, by mispronouncing her name and — last but not least — by wearing that stupid hate in public!

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—  admin