Texas Governor Rick Perry has
criticized and Houston Mayor Annise Parker has cheered President
Obama's announcement in support of gay marriage.
on Wednesday told ABC News' Robin Roberts: “I've concluded that
for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that
I think same sex couples should be able to get married.”
Parker, who is openly gay and in her
second term as mayor, tweeted: “Wow! I was wrong. Call from White
House. The President has stepped up and stated his support for
recognizing relationships … like mine!”
According to the Houston
Chronicle, senior Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett called Parker
with the news.
Perry dismissed the announcement,
calling it a political maneuver.
“Election-year politics will never
change,” said Perry spokeswoman Catherine Frazier. “Governor
Perry's unwavering commitment is to the sanctity of marriage, defined
as a union between one man and one woman.”
Perry, who pulled out of the GOP
presidential nominating contest in January, created controversy with
his position on gay marriage and openly gay military service. Early
in the race, Perry said he backed a state's right to decide on the
issue but later added that he favors a
federal amendment to the constitution which would define marriage as
a heterosexual union. Perry also lamented the end of “Don't
Ask, Don't Tell,” the policy which for 18 years banned gay and
bisexual troops from serving openly, in an ad released in Iowa. The
ad, titled Strong, inspired
numerous parodies on the Internet.