During his presidential campaign, Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) has had difficulty recalling how many justices sit on the Supreme Court and remembering their names, so perhaps it’s not surprising that today, he forgot a landmark case involving his administration.
At a town hall in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Perry appeared to draw a blank when asked about Lawrence v. Texas, a landmark 2003 Supreme Court case that threw out Texas’ anti-sodomy laws. Perry was elected governor of Texas in 2000. “I wish I could tell you I knew every Supreme Court case. I don’t, I’m not even going to try,” he responded, calling it a “gotcha question.” “I’m not a lawyer,” he added. Watch it, via TPM:
Texas’s “Homosexual Conduct” law, which Lawrence overturned, “made it a crime for two people of the same sex to have oral or anal sex, even though those sex acts were legal in Texas for people to engage in with persons of a different sex.”
As TPM’s Pema Levy notes, Perry defended the law in 2002 when the high court took up the case, saying, “I think our law is appropriate that we have on the books.” When his state lost, he called the justices “nine oligarchs in robes.”