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Perry fails to name third department his platform seeks to eliminate

Image has not been found. URL: http://images.americanindependent.com/RickPerry_stumped3601.jpgIn what is being described as a “royal gaffe” and a “senior moment” during Wednesday night’s GOP presidential debate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry failed to remember the third federal department his platform seeks to eliminate if elected president.

It’s being seen as a flub that could seriously hamper his already sinking chances for the presidential nomination.

“And I will tell ya, it’s three agencies of government when I get there that are gone when I get there,” he said, speaking to Rep. Ron Paul to his left. “Commerce, Education and what’s the third one there, let’s see?” Perry asked.

“The EPA?” suggested Mitt Romney, after a pause.

“EPA, there ya go, no, OK,” Perry joked, before conceding it wasn’t the EPA he was trying to come up with.

“You can’t name the third one?,” pressed the debate moderator.

Struggling to recall the name of the Department of Energy — which he finally remembered some fifteen minutes later — Perry fumbled through a painful, drawn-out moment.

“I would do away with Education, Commerce and the third one…I can’t. I am sorry. Oops,” Perry said.

A top Perry fundraiser told a Washington Post blogger that the Perry campaign was effectively “over” with his debate blunder, stacked on top of already slipping poll numbers, reported Talking Points Memo.

Perry went into damage control mode soon after the debate ended, downplaying the importance of his performance, with a good-natured laugh-with-’em attitude.

“Really glad I wore my boots 2nite because I stepped in it out there,” Perry tweeted afterward. “I did still name 2 agencies to eliminate. Obama has never done that!”

As the Dallas Observer noted, Perry’s campaign spun a quick opportunity out of the moment, asking in an online poll this morning, “What part of the Federal Government would you like to forget about the most?”

Options there include the EPA and the Marine Mammal Commission.

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