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Texas governor Rick Perry apologized as only he can on Thursday, acknowledging that he “stepped right in it” when he compared gay people to alcoholics during an appearance at the Commonwealth Club of California last week.

“I got asked about issues, and instead of saying ‘you know what, we need to be a really respectful and tolerant country to everybody, and get back to talking about, whether you’re gay or straight, you need to be…having a job, and those are the focuses that I want to be involved with,'” he said during an event hosted by The Christian Science Monitor. “I readily admit I stepped right in it.”

Perry ignited controversy last Wednesday when he was asked if “homosexuals can be cured by prayer or counseling,” a position that the Texas Republican Party endorsed in its most recent platform.

“I don’t know,” Perry responded. “I’m not a psychiatrist, I’m not a doctor.”

After being pressed by the moderator on whether being gay is a disorder, Perry made his ill-fated comparison. “I may have the genetic coding that I’m inclined to be an alcoholic, but I have the desire not to do that,” he said.

Perry then made matters worse with a clunky appearance on CNBC, in which he drew the ire of host Joe Kernan by repeating the “I’m not a doctor” line.

“I have a really high bar for what I would take offense to, but that would exceed the bar for me on being an offensive comment,” Kernan told the potential 2016 presidential candidate. “I don’t think gay marriage leads to cirrhosis of the liver or domestic violence or DWIs. I don’t see how that’s similar.”

Photo: The Texas Tribune via Flickr

Video via NBC News

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