Rick Perry recently came out with a new ad touting his faith and attacking gay soldiers. Watch:
Perry also did an interview with ABC News' Christine Amanpour saying he would feel comfortable reinstating DADT. Here's the transcript (pulled from the Washington Blade) from that interview:
Christine Amanpour: As president, would you reinstate “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” — even if commanders, as they have done, have said that openly serving gays and lesbians have not many any difference to operational security or any kind of morale?
Rick Perry: I think you go back and sit down with your commanders in the field and have that conversation. I think “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” worked very well, and —
Amanpour: So you would reinstate it?
Perry: I think it worked very well.
Amanpour: But would you reinstate it?
Perry: I think the idea the president of the United States wanted to make a political statement using our men and women in the military as the tool for that was irresponsible.
Amanpour: Do you think it was a political statement?
Amanpour: So many allied governments — whether it’s Israel, whether it’s England or France — have done that and they say they have strengthened their armed forces, and you remember, during the Iraq war, there were so many gay people who couldn’t serve in desperately needed positions and that harmed national security. You would really reinstate it?
Perry: I don’t necessarily agree with your premise. What I agree with is that the president of the United States [was] changing policy that was working well — and to do it while we were at war in two different theaters, I think, was irresponsible. And I truly believe he did it to respond to his political base.
Amanpour: You were in the Air Force. Would you have been uncomfortable serving with openly gay members of the Air Force?
Perry: I don’t ask that question. I think that’s the issue right there. If an individual, in their private life, makes a decision about their sexuality from the standpoint of how they’re going to practice it, that’s their business. I don’t think that question needs to be asked. That’s the reason “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was, in fact, a workable policy, and that’s where I would be comfortable with our country going back to that.
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